The European Commission has taken two measures to support farmers faced with the waves of drought affecting Europe, it announced in a press release on Thursday evening.
On the one hand, European farmers will be able to receive a higher percentage of their advances to make direct payments and payments in respect of agricultural development.
Up to 70% of their direct payments and 85% of payments linked to agricultural development will be made available from mid-October to bolster their cash position.
On the other hand, in order to be able to feed their animals, they will have greater flexibility regarding the use of land not normally utilised for production purposes.
The waiving of certain requirements concerning “greening” will apply to crop diversification and to regulations governing areas of ecological interest with bearing on land left fallow.
The adoption of other kinds of exceptions concerning “greening” will also be able to be considered, allowing farmers greater flexibility regarding forage production.
On top of the ongoing assessment and analysis – thanks to European satellites – of the drought and its repercussions, the Commission is in touch with member states to gather up-to-date information on the consequences of the drought for farmers that is sourced at a more local level, the EU executive emphasised.
The announcement of these measures has come on the eve of the Foire de Libramont, Europe’s biggest open-air agricultural fair being held throughout the weekend in this small commune situated in Luxembourg province.