In May 2019, the then Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine decided to establish the CAP Consultative Committee in order to facilitate stakeholder engagement in the CAP reform process.
Committee Membership was drawn from a broad range of invited stakeholders with an interest in, or affected by, the proposed changes in the CAP legislative framework, as well as the development and implementation of Ireland’s CAP Strategic Plan. In total, 27 different stakeholders are represented on the Committee. These include all the main farming organisations and a number of environmental and other non-governmental organisations, as well as State Agencies and Government Departments.
For reasons of efficiency, it is not possible for all organisations that make requests to be afforded membership of the CAP Consultative Committee. While the final shape of Ireland’s national CAP Strategic Plan is not yet finalised, it is not expected to include support for forestry establishment, although the planting of trees on farms is being considered.
As the Deputy is aware, the organisation named is represented on the Department’s Forestry Policy Group, which is chaired by Minister of State Hackett, who has overall responsibility for the forestry sector.
As set out in the Programme for Government, the Government is committed to a new National Forestry Programme and, although this Programme is outside of the CAP, it is the Department’s intention to ensure that there is coherence between this Programme and the CAP Strategic Plan.