The Commission has proposed an exceptional measure funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) to allow member states to pay a one-off lump sum to farmers and agri-food businesses affected by significant increases in input costs. Once adopted by the co-legislators, this measure will allow member states to decide to use available funds of up to 5% of their EAFRD budget for the years 2021-2022 for direct income support for farmers and SMEs active in processing, marketing or development of agricultural products.
Member states are required to target this support to beneficiaries who are most affected by the current crisis and who are engaged in circular economy, nutrient management, efficient use of resources or environmental and climate friendly production methods. The Commission is also stepping up its monitoring of the main agricultural markets impacted by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Following a decision published today, member states will have to notify the Commission their monthly level of stocks of cereals, oilseeds, rice and certified seeds of these products held by relevant producers, wholesalers and operators. The Commission also launched today a dedicated dashboard presenting up-to-date, detailed statistics on prices, production, and trade of milling wheat, maize, barley, rapeseed, sunflower oil, and soya beans at EU and global level. This provides market operators a timely and accurate picture of the availability of essential commodities for food and feed.
The exceptional proposal follows the €500 million support package for EU farmers adopted on 23 March in the framework of the Communication on “safeguarding food security and reinforcing the resilience of food systems”. A press release and a factsheet are available online and more information are available here.