Food Wise 2025 agri-food strategy launched in Ireland

Last week the Irish government launched the latest in a series of rolling ten-year strategies for the Irish agri-food sector called Food Wise 2025 (FW2025). The report follows in the footsteps of Agri Food 2010 (published in 2000), Agri Vision 2015, Food Harvest 2020 (full disclosure: I was a member of the committees that drafted those two reports) and now Food Wise 2025. In this post, I review the latest strategy and comment, in particular, on its environmental implications.
While Food Harvest 2020 (FH2020) contained a number of detailed sectoral targets, Food Wise 2025 avoids this level of quantification and contains just four headline aspirations:
• increase the value of agri food exports by 85% to €19 billion,
• increase value added to the sector by 70% to €13 billion,
• increase the value of primary production by 65% to €10 billion.… Read the rest

What is the growth potential of EU agriculture?

Commissioner-designate Phil Hogan committed himself to a growth, jobs and investment agenda for agriculture in his confirmation hearing with the EP’s COMAGRI. Given the stuttering EU recovery and continued high unemployment in EU countries, this is an understandable objective. But can EU agriculture rise to the challenge? Not on its past record, at least without substantially changing the policy paradigm.
It is rarely recognised just how disappointing the growth performance of EU agriculture has been over the past two decades. As shown in the figure below, the average growth rate over the period 1990-2011 for the EU-28 has been a mere 0.2% per annum.… Read the rest