The Farmers’ Union of Wales strongly condemned today’s announcement by Natural Resources and Food Minister Alun Davies that Wales will apply the maximum 15% modulation rate from direct farm payments, believing it will disadvantage farmers in Wales.
FUW president Emyr Jones said: “Scotland announced a rate of 9.5% today and other EU states and regions are expected to announce low rates.
“Under the Minister’s announcement, 15% of farmers’ direct payments (Pillar 1) will be transferred into the Rural Development programme (Pillar 2) which funds, amongst other things, agri-environment, processing, marketing tourism and wider rural development programmes.
“The FUW had called for a stepped approach to modulation as opposed to going for the maximum straight away and there are now fears that Welsh farmers will be disadvantaged over other farmers in the EU.
“The cut in the EU budget was already going to have a major impact on the single farm payment and today’s announcement will make things worse.
“The Minister had previously indicated that he didn’t want to unduly disrupt the industry in converting from a historic to a flat rate payment system, but we are concerned that today’s announcement could potentially create far more disruption than any payment rate decision.”