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Copa-Cogeca disappointed at EU Farm Ministers lack of decision to take measures to alleviate pressure on milk producers

Press Release
Copa-Cogeca disappointed at EU Farm Ministers lack of decision to take measures to alleviate pressure on milk producers Copa-Cogeca was disappointed today at the lack of decision amongst EU Farm Ministers to take measures to alleviate pressure on EU milk producers.

Copa-Cogeca Working Party Chairman Mansel Raymond stressed “European dairy producers wanted a clear signal from EU Agricultural Ministers today about the short and long term developments in the dairy sector. World competition is increasing and we need a strong sector that can compete on the world dairy market. Global demand for dairy products is predicted to be positive in the medium-term, forecast to grow by 2.3% annually up to 2020. Farmers need to be in a position to make use of these growing market opportunities. But there is a real cash flow recovery problem in the sector, which has impacted on milk producers’ incomes. In order to take advantage of the market opportunities, we wanted to alleviate pressure on producers. We wanted to ensure that money from the milk superlevy is kept in the sector and that measures are taken in order to ease the burden on milk producers who are desperately trying to recover their cash flow. We are disappointed by the lack of decision from Ministers today on the issue”. In a high-level meeting with the Greek Presidency, Copa-Cogeca Secretary-General Pekka Pesonen also highlighted the extreme price volatility that is affecting European milk producers It is vital to maintain current tools to address the increased market volatility, like public
intervention. In the longer term, we need to discuss further how to address the increased price volatility in a market-orientated way, and complementary to the milk package provisions”. Ministers also agreed conclusions on the EU Commission report on review of the EU fruit and
vegetable regime. Copa-Cogeca welcomes the EU Commission report on the regime which shows that the system works well and that producer organisations like cooperatives, must be encouraged to enable farmers to get a better return for their produce and to add value to it. The
report shows that the share of the total value of EU fruit and vegetable production marketed by producer organisations like cooperatives grew sharply over the period 2008-2010 after the reform was made in 2007, to reach 43.9. It is proof that the system works well and must be kept,
and improved. Red tape must be reduced and legal certainties vis-à-vis rules for POs improved. POs need a reliable and stable policy framework to meet upcoming challenges Ministers went on to debate implementation at national level of the new Common Agricultural Policy which leaves much flexibility to Member States. Mr Pesonen highlighted the need for the common nature of the CAP to be respected as far as possible and for CAP simplification to be ensured and red tape reduced.

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