Making EU farm policy work better for farmers and consumers 

Reforms designed to simplify EU farming policy, boost farmers’ bargaining power against supermarkets and better equip them to face risks, will be debated on Monday and voted on on Tuesday.

The reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), which is to take effect in 2018, should strengthen farmers’ bargaining power by allowing all recognised farmers’ organisations to plan production and negotiate supply contracts on behalf of its members without falling foul of the EU’s competition rules.

Farmers would also get better tools to protect themselves against market volatility and risks such as bad weather conditions, plant pests or animal diseases, and the EU Commission will be empowered to respond faster to crises with exceptional support measures for farmers.

Member states would have more flexibility to define an “active farmer”, i.e. a person eligible for EU farm subsidies. They could also significantly increase “top-ups” for young farmers, to attract them into the sector.

Quick facts

The draft law updating the 2013 EU’s farming policy rules was provisionally agreed by MEPs and EU ministers on 12 October. The new CAP rules, if approved by  Parliament and Council, should enter into force on 1 January 2018.

Procedure: Ordinary legislative procedure (co-decision), 1st reading agreement

Type of document: Regulation


Debate: Monday, 11 December

Vote: Tuesday, 12 December

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