Subscribe Login
DE4CC0DE-5FC3-4494-BCBF-4D50B00366B5
Supply Chain

EU Begins Talks To Finalise Farm Policy Overhaul

EU negotiators began two days of talks on Tuesday on a plan designed to make the bloc's huge farming subsidies greener and fairer, although campaigners question its environmental impact.

The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) will spend €387 billion ($473 billion), around a third of the EU's 2021-2027 budget, on payments to farmers and support for rural development, with new rules kicking in from 2023.

The revamp aims to align agriculture with the EU's target of zero net emissions by 2050, by tackling the 10% of EU greenhouse gases emitted by farming.

"We aim to close the deal this week," an EU official said of talks between negotiators from the European Parliament and the EU member states.

Farm Policy Overhaul

The proposed changes have come under fire from environmental campaigners, who say they lack firm targets and would allow the bulk of subsidies to be spent on polluting forms of industrial farming.

The latest proposal would set aside 23% of payments to farmers from 2023 for schemes that safeguard the environment, and 25% from 2025 onwards. That could include organic farming or the use of feed additives to reduce methane emissions from cows.

Negotiators are also tussling over how to ensure the CAP supports small farmers.

One option is to use a stricter definition of 'active farmer' recipients. Parliament has said this should halt payments to large-scale processors of agricultural products.

Voluntary Redistribution

The European Commission and Parliament have sought a €100,000 per year cap per beneficiary, with the excess redirected to smaller farmers. EU countries and farming groups say redistributions should be voluntary.

Pekka Pesonen, secretary-general of European farmers and agri-cooperatives group Copa Cogeca, warned against a "one-size-fits-all" approach and said farmers were being asked to make green investments despite lower subsidies.

The European Environmental Bureau says the CAP plans have no targets for reducing agricultural emissions and says firm rules are needed to keep EU countries in line.

Agriculture is the most frequently reported pressure on Europe's habitats and species, from intensified farming practices including pesticide use and irrigation.

News by Reuters, edited by ESM. For more Supply Chain news, click here. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

Stay Connected With Our Weekly Newsletter

Processing your request...

Thanks! please check your email to confirm your subscription.

By signing up you are agreeing to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy
Enjoy unlimited digital access for 30 days
Get exclusive access to the latest grocery retail & FMCG news, interviews with industry leading executives, and expert analysis on the trends shaping the sector today
Enjoy unlimited digital access for 30 days
Enjoy unlimited digital access for 30 days
Get exclusive access to the latest grocery retail & FMCG news, interviews with industry leading executives, and expert analysis on the trends shaping the sector today
Enjoy unlimited digital access for 30 days