A new Eurobarometer public opinion poll shows widespread support among European citizens for the Commission’s main CAP reform proposals. The poll, conducted by TNS Opinion and Social, interviewed 26,713 adults, enough for a representative sample in each member state.
The first question, concerning setting a cap on the amount of aid to the largest farms found that 47% of respondents favour a limit while 28% opposed a limit. 15 per cent didn’t know. Support for capping was strongest in Cyprus (+54%), Denmark (+36%), Finland (+33%) and Sweden (29%). Malta was the only country where more people thought a limit was a bad thing (-20%).… Read the rest
Today, farmsubsidy.org revealed the results of an intensive two-day harvest of new farm subsidy data published by the European Union’s member states in accordance with the new laws on disclosure of beneficiaries of EU funds.
The data, relating to payments made in 2009, has been harvested from twenty seven government websites, in some cases using advanced computer programming techniques. So far, data on 38.3 billion euros of payments have been harvested (from a total CAP budget of 55 billion euros). In some cases member states have made the data easy to access, in other cases they appear to take deliberate steps to block access.… Read the rest
Last Friday, Le Monde, the leading French daily newspaper, devoted a double-page spread on its comment pages to the common agricultural policy. Along with José Bové, Michiel A. Keyzer and Jean-Christophe Bureau I was invited to contribute an article to the debate. You can read it in French on the Le Monde website. I’ve posted an English version below.
Farming should protect Europe’s environmental resources not use them up
In 2009, farm incomes fell across the whole of the EU, not least in France. Dairy farms have been hardest hit with average prices down twenty per cent. This is despite the EU spending 55 billion euro on the common agricultural policy, one of whose aims is to ensure farmers a fair standard of living.… Read the rest