CLA Wales will concentrate on the linkage between Glastir and CAP reform when the rural economy experts share a platform with RSPB Cymru at a Plaid Cymru Annual Conference Fringe Meeting in Aberystwyth on Friday, 10 September.
In what is seen as a major milestone, CLA Wales Policy advisor Sue Evans will address the theme Sustainable Land Management. The debate will be conducted bilingually, with translation facilities, and will be chaired by WAG Rural Affairs Minister and Ceredigion AM Elin Jones.
Sue Evans says: "It’s appropriate amid all the criticism of Glastir to look at the positive aspects. It is the only means of public support that will be available to farmers and landowners post 2013 and it’s important to view it in the right perspective.
"We have worked with WAG over the past two years and more developing this scheme. It’s not perfect, but it reflects current European thinking on the public goods agenda and the move towards what we call Food and Environmental Security.
"We and RSPB Cymru are strong supporters of Glastir, CAP reform, and the need to move towards a support system that rewards farmers for the provision of environmental goods and services, including management for carbon storage/sequestration, water, biodiversity and food produced within environmentally sustainable limits."
Sue Evans added that the CLA and the European Landowners Organisation had put a huge amount of work into shaping European Commission thinking on the aspect of public goods. There was universal acknowledgement that while the role of agriculture is first and foremost the production of wholesome, nutritious food at affordable prices, European agriculture offers services and functions well beyond this, and most of these services, especially the environmental ones which the public value most, are not paid for at all by markets.
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