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Correction: Rural development funds allocation

There has been much interest in the provenance of the figures on the allocation of rural development funding between member states which I discussed in this post earlier this week. In the post I said that these were figures circulated by Herman van Rompuy during the special European Council meeting to discuss the MFF on [...]

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Understanding the ‘active farmer’ debate

Proposed definition of active farmers restores link between production and payments.

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Rural development funds allocation hits new member states

What new member states gain through convergence of Pillar 1 payments they could lose in Pillar 2 allocations under the latest Van Rompuy proposals.

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EIP: has the role of knowledge in agriculture been rediscovered?

Brussels EIP stakeholders event on 19th November 2012: support for new agricultural innovation networking with many open questions about the implementation.

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Council debate on greening raises more questions than answers

Watching the videostream of the Agricultural Council’s greening debate held earlier this week was a rather depressing experience. There is something profoundly wrong with a decision-making system where food and agricultural policy is determined solely by agricultural ministers who speak on behalf of their farmers only, with only the Commission present to even vaguely represent [...]

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Nobody cares what we spend our money on

It seems that everyone wants to spend more and more without questioning the effectiveness of spending.

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No decision on MFF budget at first attempt

European Council leaders fail to agree Van Rompuy’s second MFF proposal which reinstated a large share of the CAP Pillar 1 reductions previously suggested.

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Strengthening the role of young farmers in the future CAP

The European Council of Young Farmers (CEJA) has recently launched a campaign “Future Food Farmers”, calling for generational renewal in the European agriculture.

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MFF baton passes to Van Rompuy: further cuts proposed compared to Commission proposal

Further cuts in agricultural budget proposed in Van Rompuy’s MFF proposal for the European Council.

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The US Farm Bill: Lessons for CAP Reform ?

The US Farm Bill debate has important consequences for the EU. But it should not be a source of inspiration for the MEPs…

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The nitty-gritty of CAP reform: the case of new entrants

David Barnes is the Scottish Government’s Deputy Director for Agriculture and Rural Development. He sits with his Minister around the Council of Agricultural Ministers’ table as the negotiations on the shape of the CAP2020 take place and, more interestingly, he blogs about it. His blog gives an insider’s view and a personal perspective on what [...]

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European Parliament postpones vote on CAP reforms

New European Parliament timetable for CAP reform decisions puts 2014 implementation in doubt.

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Cyprus Presidency issues second revised MFF negotiating box

Agricultural spending escapes lightly in new revision of the MFF negotiating box which shows where budget reductions in the 2014-2020 would fall.

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October Agricultural Council continues CAP debate

Agricultural Ministers continued to grind through their discussions on CAP2020 issues under the Cypriot Presidency at the Agricultural Council meeting on 22 and 23 October earlier this week.

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What potential agroforestry holds for the future CAP?

A recent conference organised in the European Parliament brought agroforestry to the heart of the discussion on the CAP reform.

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Farmer-friendly ideas on greening

COPA-COGECA comes out with new ideas on greening but they help little to tackle its fundamental problem.

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How close is the EU to agreement on spending one trillion euro?

Absence of figures in the MFF negotiating box as the endgame approaches suggests governments not yet ready for the necessary compromises.

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OECD reports EU farm transfers at lowest level ever

OECD figures show a continued slight fall in EU transfers to farmers as measured by the Producer Support Estimate indicator.

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Further thoughts on CAP greening

New paper provides useful summary of the CAP greening debate to date.

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Cyprus Presidency proposes CAP budget cut in next MFF

Cyprus Presidency recognises for first time that Commission’s proposed CAP budget is unrealistic.

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COMAGRI CAP2020 amendments published

Links to the COMAGRI amendments to the Commission’s draft regulations on CAP post 2013.

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New opportunities to visualise agricultural data

Data visualisation software from Google helps to see trends in agricultural data.

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Discarding food vs. starving people – Inefficient and immoral?

Food waste is now a hotly discussed issue, but recent studies greatly overstate the size of the problem and the extent to which reducing food waste would help the world’s hungry.

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Perspectives on the CAP2020 debate

Three recent presentations summarise the state of the CAP reform debate at this point.

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COMAGRI Chair calls for maintenance of CAP budget in real terms

Draft COMAGRI report calls to maintain CAP spending in real terms in the 2014-2020 MFF period..

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How much progress has been made on agreeing the 2014-2020 MFF?

Only limited progress has been made in narrowing the divergences of view on the EU’s medium-term financial framework. Time is running out and the stakes are high.

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What role for agriculture in rural development?

The CAP is partially justified because of its contribution to ‘viable rural communities’ but the relationship between agriculture and non-agricultural development is as likely to be competitive as complementary.

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Is selling ‘experiences’ a potential growth path for European agriculture?

Does the ‘experience economy’ in which consumers pay premium prices for products and services that provide additional intangible ‘experiences’ constitute a viable growth path for European agriculture?

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Old interests in the New Member States

It seems that the New Member States want to further water down the original proposals of the Commission.

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Eurobarometer food security survey

What are we to make of the findings in the latest Eurobarometer survey of EU public opinion on Europeans’ attitudes to their own food security?

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The European Parliament report on the measurement of farm support

A variety of estimates of the level of farm support circulate. Many of them rely on creative accounting. For example, during the recent farm bill debate in the US Senate on C-Span television, a Senator claimed that the EU subsidized its farmers seventeen times more than the US, quoting as “evidence” that farm subsidies accounted [...]

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Gunfight for CAP Budget Money

The CAP budget negotiations have started to heat up, negotiators have formed the clubs of like-minded countries. Also this time negotiations are mostly a (gun)fight for preserving or improving the net position of Member States.

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The EU as a destabilising force in world grain markets

The EU’s attempts to protect livestock farmers during the 2007-08 price spike helped to destablise world grain prices for poor country consumers.

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Negotiations on future CAP have speeded up

Despite the hot summer across Europe, the previous weeks were quite busy in Brussels. On June 18th and 19th 2012, the European Parliament’s Agricultural Committee Rapporteurs presented their four draft reports on the reform on the Common Agricultural Policy, while one week on, on June 25th, these draft plans were confronted with national interests (based [...]

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Co-financing rates in Pillar 2

The design of co-financing rates will influence total public spending on Pillar 2 measures in the next programming period.

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Paper on CAP greening

Links to a recent paper and report I have written on CAP greening

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A mandatory minimum spending requirement on agri-environment-climate change measures in Pillar 2?

Attempts to water down the mandatory spending limits on agri-environment-climate measures should be resisted.

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What Rio+20 has for the CAP?

20 years have passed since the Earth Summit was organised in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) will also be held in Rio this week and the apparent question comes what has happened in 20 years time. Almost nothing, many argue, as global sustainability is more on the [...]

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More supply management demanded in COMAGRI single CMO report

Michel Dantin’s draft COMAGRI report on the single Common Market Organisation regulation would allow producer organisations greater powers to manage supply particularly in crisis situations.

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Danish Presidency CAP reform progress report

The Danish Presidency has made some progress in narrowing the differences in Council on the CAP negotiating texts.

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COMAGRI draft report on rural development

The Capoulas Santos draft rapporteur’s report accepts the broad lines of the Commission’s proposal – greater coordination with other structural funds, abolition of the axes, more encouragement for innovation, inclusion of support for risk management – and concentrates on fine tuning some of its specific elements.

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London Olympics opening ceremony chimes with greening vision for the CAP

The dazzling opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympics was a triumph of discipline, choreography, stagecraft. London will host the games later this summer and it was announced today that the 2012 opening ceremony will take an altogether different, gentler approach. The 2012 Olympics will open with a pastoral representation of the countryside comprising a [...]

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COMAGRI draft report on direct payments regulation

COMAGRI draft rapporteur’s report on direct payments addresses some of the concerns of Member States, but the overall environmental ambition likely to be delivered by this reform remains unclear.

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How the EU market looks to food exporters

The EU’s tariff regime for agri-food imports is highly discriminatory, intended to benefit developing countries in particular. But tariff barriers are still important for Southern Mediterrananean countries and South Africa.

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More thoughts on the European Innovation Partnership for Agriculture

The slowdown in total factor productivity growth in agriculture needs to be reversed, but there continues to be a lack of clarity about the Commission’s proposals and what they will mean in practice.

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Will the right tariff average stand up?

New tariff database allows assessment of EU agricultural protection in a global context.

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Macroeconomic conditionality and rural development funding

The Commission’s proposal to make rural development funding conditional on macroeconomic good behaviour in the next MFF might not be a good idea.

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The political economy of eliminating sugar quotas in 2015

Sugar producers and processers line up against sugar users in the debate on eliminating sugar quotas in 2015.

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Where stand the MFF negotiations on the CAP?

The MFF negotiating box dealing with CAP issues gives a good idea of the extent of the disagreements that must be bridged before a successful outcome.

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Achieving green growth in EU agriculture

The EU’s efforts to promote green growth in the food and agriculture sectors do not seem commensurate with the level of ambition required.

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