Agriculture Minister says new strategic planning includes measures for young farmers

©Cyprus News Agency

Cyprus’ new strategic planning in the framework of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) of the European Union will include measures to help young farmers enter the profession and the improvement of the environment in which they operate, said the Minister of Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment Costas Kadis during a press conference on the project “CAPture the Future Generation”.

The project “CAPture the Future Generation” focuses on the challenge of the ageing farming population and aims through its activities to spread awareness amongst the young generation on the benefits of the Common Agricultural Policy, so as to motivate young people to become involved in the agricultural sector. The project has a duration of one year and is implemented by IMH. It is funded by 60% by the IMCAP programme of EU.

According to Kadis, both the new CAP and the new strategic planning of Cyprus, as well as that of the previous programming period, include a series of measures aimed at integrating young farmers into the profession.

“Through the previous plans we saw a number of young people entering the agricultural sector, we saw very interesting initiatives, new agricultural enterprises,” said Kadis. He added that the Ministry’s goal was to increase them, noting that they have a series of measures that are moving in this direction.

“These are reflected in the targeting of the new CAP and you should definitely expect measures in our new strategic planning, which will move in exactly this direction. Both for young farmers entering the sector but also for the support and improvement of the environment in which they operate”, he said.

The Minister also said that the Government wishes to integrate the views of farmers in the new strategic planning in order to “to substantially upgrade the agricultural sector and make it sustainable.”

“The pandemic has shown us, that we want a sustainable agricultural sector that can guarantee the adequacy of the quality and safety of the food that reaches the consumer,” he pointed out.

In the framework of the project “CAPture the Future Generation” four activities will be implemented in Cyprus. The “Agripreneurs Project” to encourage young people to become entrepreneurs by engaging with agricultural related activities.

It includes the development of an online educational toolkit, aiming to reach school children by teaching their teachers who will then act as information multipliers.

An agricultural Start-up Conference and Expo will also be held to provide students with a platform from where their projects can be observed by potential sponsors/businesses who might be willing to invest in their ideas.

Additionally, a communication campaign will use different channels and tools of communication such as social media, press releases, newsletters, radio promotion, information material in printed and electronic form and info points, to raise awareness and inform the general public on the aims, benefits and challenges of the CAP.