MEPs to make decisive vote on CAP this week

EU farming unions Copa and Cogeca say that MEPs must focus on the urgent needs of farmers and agri-cooperatives as they vote on the Common Agricultural Policy.
calendar icon 19 October 2020
clock icon 3 minute read

Facing growing uncertainties with Brexit, the COVID-19 crisis and the effects of climate change, having a swift decision on CAP this week is of paramount importance. Farmers and their cooperatives are looking up to EU policy makers to set clarity on what they should expect in the next CAP. Considering the current socio-economic situation, it is a necessity, not a luxury. Together with 76 percent of EU citizens, Copa-Cogeca believe that CAP benefits all citizens, not only farmers.

Ahead of a marathon week of crucial CAP votes, Copa and Cogeca members want to reaffirm that the CAP is an EU success story that allows, even in times of crisis, to provide consumers with safe and affordable food. A fact that should never be taken for granted. A fact that citizens understand as well according to the latest EU barometer. Farmers are ready to embrace environmental and climate measures but based on pragmatic, voluntary and well-funded tools. Food is too important for all of us to revolutionise it. Farming is not working with ideology but with concrete actions and adaptations conducted by farmers on the ground.

Copa President Christiane Lambert underlined, “On Monday19 October, we will meet with the German Presidency of the Council, and I will stress again the importance of having a general approach to start the trilogues on the CAP as soon as possible. We have already faced too many delays, and this is not understandable for most farmers across the EU as they are currently struggling with many uncertainties. Let CAP not be a Damocles sword hanging above our heads. The proposal that is currently on the table is not perfect, but it is the best comprise that we can get at this moment. In this regard, I would also like to welcome the work done by Parliament’s rapporteurs and the German Presidency.”.

Cogeca President Ramon Armengol, who is also attending the Council meeting on Monday added, “The future CAP must seriously consider the future of investments in agriculture and the innovations that we will need to feed Europe’s future. To recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and transition to a greener and more sustainable economy, producers’ organisations, such as agri-cooperatives, will also have to play a key role and are ready and willing to do so. As the situation on the ground shows, the smaller the farm, the greater the need for cooperation. This is why I see as an essential point the fact that CAP reinforces the role and the tools given to producers organisations.”.

Parallel to the claim of both Copa and Cogeca Presidents, the European farmers and agri-cooperatives organisations start a CAP countdown campaign on social media reminding some of the key principles of a successful CAP. Amongst them is the commitment to environmental sustainability and climate policy in the CAP; the urgent financial needs addressed through direct payments; the strive for simplification; conditionality rules that are easy to understand and easy to implement; the environmental ambitions rewarded with incentive payments, generational renewal and the commitment to performance framework and result based system.

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