MF: Why do we need a simplification of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP)?
MB: The CAP is one of the European Union’s most far-reaching, complicated and intricate policies. More importantly, it is one of the EU’s most ‘common’ policies, spanning different geographical areas, landscapes, soil types and farming traditions. Not only that, but it is a policy which provides different amounts of income support to every single eligible farmer in the Union. This, understandably, makes it a lengthy and complex policy which can sometimes cause administrative burden for Member States, businesses and individual farmers. Therefore, it is essential that CAP Simplification is explored extensively. Now that the new CAP has been in place since the beginning of the year, the EU institutions want to look through what has been agreed and where improvements can be made, as well as what can be done better next time.
MF: What is the background to CAP simplification?
MB: The European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Phil Hogan, has identified CAP Simplification as one of his priorities for 2015. This is also in the context of the new Commission’s Work Programme, headed up by Commission President Juncker, which highlights ‘Better Regulation’ as a core objective for EU policy. A first action plan on CAP Simplification was published in 2006, and since then there has been an ongoing CAP Simplification exercise. At the outset, the exercise will focus mostly on delegated and implementing acts, which help to put in place the detailed rules needed to implement the reformed CAP. Commissioner Hogan has already said that he will review the rules on environmental focus areas among more than 200 other Commission regulations that will be considered for simplification.
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Congratulations to the Land of the Little Grey Fergie at Norway’s Kongeparken which scooped a top prize at the Thea Awards in Los Angeles, considered by many to be the Oscars of the Themed Entertainment Industry.
This fantastic attraction area at the Kongeparken in Stavanger, one of Scandinavia’s foremost theme parks, is a celebration of the children’s character ‘Little Grey Fergie’ (Gråtass) which is based on an original Ferguson TE20 tractor.
Against stiff international competition, the team behind Gråtassland were thrilled to receive the Thea Award for New Park Land on a Limited Budget.
Over the last 20 years the original story of Little Grey Fergie’s adventures, written by Morten Myklebust, has grown into several television series, two feature films, ten music albums, live shows and more than 15 books.
Inspired by this success, Gråtassland opened in 2014. It was an instant hit and has been drawing big crowds ever since.
The Thea jury commented: “The charming Little Grey Fergie Land engages adults and children alike. It immerses them in the world of the Little Grey Fergie and is an ideal mix of real environments and fantasy. It celebrates history, modern times and fantasy – all with a goal of entertaining, and teaching about animals, farming and the importance of taking care of our environment…….This is a tremendous success that never strays from the story or the goal of the project.”
Håkon Lund, CEO of Kongeparken said: “It’s a great honour to receive the award and gain this recognition for our work. In designing Gråtassland, our aim was to engage visitors by changing the focus away from the attraction, to the experience. At its heart is an exciting tractor ride wrapped up in the tale of a much-loved icon telling the story of the Massey Ferguson Brand and its history.”
The international Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) and its awards were created to recognize achievement and talent at visitor attractions and experiences in the leisure and travel sector.
Find out more on Gråtassland at www.kongeparken.no
You can watch the live-action series at www.littlegreyfergie.com
Massey Ferguson is to update the MF 3600 range in both its Standard and Specialised formats. This will bring the range in line with the current Massey Ferguson styling, and also incorporate a number of new features which have been developed in order to meet the needs of the market.
The tractors from 69-102hp have proved extremely popular on livestock and mixed farms, and in their specialised format, for vineyards, fruit farms and growers of vegetables, salads and other specialist crops.
Rear linkage lift capacity has been increased to maximum of 3 tonnes, allowing a wider range of implements to be operated.
Steering angle has been increased as a result of redesigning the front support on the Specialised models, and is now up to 40.5 deg on the MF 3600GE version, offering easier turning in polytunnels and tight vineyard and orchard layouts.
Tractors in the MF 3600 V/S/F/GE ranges will benefit from revised styling to bring their appearance in line with the rest of the Massey Ferguson range and provide the same attractive look.
Updates include a new roof and grey side panels bringing the sleek family styling to these specialised machines. Appearance and functionality is enhanced with new oval bar lights, work and turning lights.
Models in the MF 3600 Standard Range also get the new roof, plus new oval turning and position lights and new mid-working lights.
Inside the cab, new colours and trim have been incorporated to correspond to other Massey Ferguson models.
A new indicator lever improves the control and comfort of operation as it activates seven lighting and alert functions and a battery switch is now specified.
Optional equipment includes a radio with LCD screen, MP3 compatibility via an SD card or USB link and the facility to store favourite stations. Memory back-up protects stored settings in the event of the battery being disconnected.
Production will begin on the new tractors in September 2015 and the updates will be previewed at SIMA.
Campbell Scott, Director, Sales Engineering and MF Brand Development said: “Updating the MF 3600 gives this very popular tractor the true Massey Ferguson family style plus a number of improvements that will make its operation even more user-friendly and efficient.”
Two new models in the Massey Ferguson MF 1700 Series make their debut at the SIMA Show in Paris, France. Strengthening the company’s position in the compact tractor sector, the 46hp, MF 1747 and 38hp, MF 1740 are available with either a hydrostatic transmission with cab, or in platform versions with a manual transmission.
The new MF 1700 tractors replace the MF 1540 and MF 1547 models, which have gained an enviable reputation for performance and reliability in a range of agricultural and amenity work. With new features and improvements, the MF 1740 and MF 1747 will further enhance their strong standing for reliability and ease of use.
“These neat and nimble tractors are purpose built for the sector and are packed with useful features that combine productivity and high performance with ease of use,” says Campbell Scott, Director Sales Engineering & Brand Development.
New features include latest design, 2.2 litre, four cylinder engines, a choice of hydrostatic of mechanical transmission as well as high hydraulic capacity to operate modern implements with ease. A two-speed – 540/540E – Independent PTO (IPTO) is equipped with a soft-start function for gentle take-up of the drive.
Massey Ferguson is to extend its MF 9000 series telehandler range with the introduction of the new MF 9305 Xtra.
The MF 9305 Xtra uses proven technology to offer farmers the ideal mid-size machine with a more compact option for buildings with restricted access.
With lift capacity of 3000kg and maximum lift height to 5.8m this is a machine that can be used for a wide range of loading tasks. Yet its compact chassis, at just 2.1m wide, and 2.1m tall on 20in wheels and in its low cab format, means that it can easily access traditional buildings for feeding or mucking out duties.
Where height is not an issue, the higher cab and 24in tyres offer maximum ground clearance and visibility.
Powered by a Deutz 3,6l Tier 4i engine delivering 100hp, the MF 9305 has plenty of muscle for demanding tasks such as muck loading, with a two-range hydrostatic transmission giving a top speed of 40kph for efficient transport.
Open centre auxiliary hydraulics offer a punchy 100 l/min, while four electro-hydraulic load sensing spool valves allow the operator to simultaneously use three functions with high precision. Optional boom suspension provides outstanding comfort for all transport applications.
Three semi-automatic selectable steering modes ensure optimum manoeuvrability, and together with the MF 9305’s compact dimensions, boost productivity where space is limited.
The new cab gives a modern look in line with the Massey Ferguson family style: straightforward design that is always focused on the operator. Cab layout features superb ergonomics; controls and instruments are simple to use.
A new multifunction joystick is close to hand and incorporates all the main controls needed for operating the boom and attachments. A digital display screen located on the dashboard shows essential vehicle and loading information.
Smart Handling System (SHS) is a brand new feature that uses the display menu to allow the operator to set the maximum available hydraulic flow for smoother, more accurate loading.
Another innovation is the new ECO mode, operated via a switch in the cab to manage oil flow and engine RPM to reduce fuel consumption.
As an option, front/neutral/reverse controls can be fitted on the left hand side of the steering wheel as well as on the multifunction joystick to the right.
With low operating costs, excellent fuel economy and simple servicing, the MF 9305 Xtra represents a sound investment for progressive mid-size farms, helping to ease a busy workload and increase productivity.
Campbell Scott, Director, Sales Engineering and Massey Ferguson Brand Development said: “This all-new model fits perfectly into the successful MF 9000 range between the MF 9205 and MF 9306 Xtra and gives farmers a highly versatile materials handling solution in the sub-6m bracket, while offering the high levels of specification, equipment and options usually found on larger machines. We expect it to be very popular in the traditional telehandler markets in Europe but believe it will also be of interest in some of our wider Global markets.”