New farmer charter group set up, review set for January

The establishment of a review group for a new Farmers Charter is under way.

Announced this morning, the review group will comprised Department of Agriculture officials and representatives of the main farmer representative organisations. The farmer organisations will be invited to nominate representatives to sit on the review group, which will hold its first meeting in January.

The review group will agree standards of service in respect of department schemes to which the new charter will apply. It will set out payment and decision targets in respect of these schemes and take account of any measures agreed under the Common Agricultural Policy Reform programme, including Pillar 1 supports and schemes and programmes forming part of the new Rural Development Programme 2014-2020.

According to the department: “It is hoped to have the new charter in place later in 2014 once the new Rural Development Programme has been agreed with the European Commission. At that time a Charter Monitoring Group will be established under an independent chair to monitor charter commitments.”

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