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Efra right to recognise importance of CAP in food production, says CLA


The CLA said the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Efra) Committee report on the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) after 2013, published today (15 April), was right to recognise the importance of the CAP in food production.

CLA President William Worsley said: The Efra Committees recognition of the importance of the CAP in the production of safe, high-quality food is welcome and we are pleased the report questions Defras rush to scrap direct payments in the short term.

The Committee supports the CLA view that additional payments for maintaining and enhancing biodiversity, landscape management and clean water are needed as markets do not currently reward farmers for these services.

However, Mr Worsley said it was wrong for the Efra Committee to get hung up on arguments over which pillar is best for delivering environmental benefits when considering the greening of the CAP.

He said: We should be taking advantage of the strengths of both pillars. Pillar 1 is more certain, whereas Pillar 2 is more flexible and lends itself to regional adaptability. We must ensure that livestock production businesses in the Uplands, which rely on the CAP as their main source of funding, are adequately rewarded for the ecosystem services they provide.

It is important to agree what we want farmers to provide and then guarantee a sufficient budget to deliver it.


  • The Efra Committees report The Common Agricultural Policy after 2013 can be downloaded from after midnight on Friday, 15 April.
  • The Country Land and Business Association (CLA) has around 35,000 members.
  • As a membership organisation, the CLA supports landowners by advising them on how best to protect and maximise their asset: the land. We are dedicated to supporting landowners and their businesses. Our success is measured by how effectively we do that. We have a team of experts in London and a regional structure able to give local support.
  • We have been looking after the interests of our members, as well as promoting the positive aspects of land ownership, land management and rural business activities for the past 100 years. CLA members own or manage approximately half the rural land in England and Wales, and the resulting expertise puts us in a unique position to formulate policies and lobby effectively.
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