Commissioner Cioloş in Ireland
Commissioner Dacian Cioloș visited Ireland on Friday 1 October, holding a series of meetings with stakeholders and members of the Parliament Joint Agriculture Committee.
The trip included a meeting with An Taiseaoch (prime minister) Brian Cowan, and formal and informal discussions with Agriculture Minister Brendan Smith and Minister for Rural Affairs Pat Carey - and a visit to a livestock farm in County Kildare. In the course of his meetings, Commissioner Cioloș stated that: "Irish agriculture is a good example of the type of farming that the EU wants to support - not only producing good, quality food, but also providing a significant number of environmental and other public benefits, and helping to maintain the social fabric and landscape of rural areas". In response to numerous requests to keep the historic basis for distributing the Single Farm Payment, the Commissioner underlined that there are 27 Member States and that more equitable rules and criteria must apply to all - but that any changes would be "an evolution, rather than a revolution".