Johann Tasker writes in the Farmers Weekly that farmers who refuse to adopt 'green' measures planned by Brussels will lose far more than the expected 30% of their annual subsidy cheque.
Apparently proposals unveiled this week suggested 30% of direct payments would depend on farmers respecting certain agricultural practices including maintaining permanent pasture and cultivating at least three different crops on arable land.
To receive 100% of their direct payment, farmers would also have to maintain an "ecological focus area" covering at least 7% of their land.
Eligible areas contributing to this 7% include field margins, buffer strips, hedges, trees, fallow land, approved landscapes and beneficial water features.
Farmers who repeatedly refuse to implement these environmental measures would lose much more than 30% of their direct payment.
A commission spokesman told Farmers Weekly the intention was that all farmers should participate in the greening scheme.