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EU Milk policy: Superlevy update

Six key Agriculture Ministers from milk-producing countries have issued a strongly worded letter to the Agriculture Commissioner calling him move unilaterally to adjust the butterfat co-efficient.

This attempt is seen as the latest political push to allow a possible reduction of Superlevy fines for surpassing milk quotas in the regime’s final year.

Ministers from Germany, Poland, Holland, Austria, Latvia and Luxemburg  have argued at the futility of the EU imposing such fines on its own industry when ‘an outdated milk quota scheme that is going to be phased out in a couple of months anyway’.

While Minister Coveney and our traditional ally on the matter Denmark did not add their names to the request, as they are focusing their attention to resist any attempts to introduce new market management measures, ICOS would request the Minister to continue to follow developments carefully.

ICOS agrees with the Ministerial letter’s contention that current commission policy on the matter is ‘not in line with the objective of a soft-landing’ and furthermore is ‘diametrically opposed to the jointly agreed aim to safeguard jobs in rural areas & strengthen the competitiveness of the European agricultural sector at international level’.

In the latest meeting of the European Parliament agriculture committee, many MEPs attacked the commission’s position and intransigence on the issue.

As ever while ICOS continues to work on the matter, we advise all of our members to plan on existing rules.