It’s a bright sunny morning in Luxembourg, unlike Edinburgh when I left on Sunday afternoon which looked like a scene from Gorillas in the Mist.
The CAP business at today’s Council of Ministers is in two parts. It’s the end of the Danish Presidency and they have produced a long and detailed progress report on the negotiations; and there will be a policy debate on rural development.
The latter includes the question of whether the new rules should specify that a certain minimum percentage of the new programme budget must be spent on environmental measures. For Scotland, the key issue there is whether LFA support (or ANC as it will be) counts against the minimum. You can debate whether LFASS does or doesn’t have enough environmental conditionality in it, but the bottom line is that it helps a lot of High Nature Value farming, so in our view it should count, as it does at present.