Let’s stand up for Europe’s farmers, not against them!

This week, MEPs will vote on the final agreement on the new Common Agricultural Policy for the period 2023-2027. Let’s stand up for Europe’s farmers, not against them!

The EPP has been at the forefront of these negotiations. For us it was fundamental to find a balance between the essential economic development of farms and the necessary protection of the environment and climate, and to do everything to keep the production of our food in Europe.

The new CAP will keep our food affordable, guarantee its quality and promote the economic, social and ecological sustainability of our agriculture and European rural territories.

Agriculture is a strategic sector for Europe’s food autonomy.

We must ensure that it is not put at risk by excessive demands for “greening” which would lead to a collapse of our own food production and an increase in imports from the rest of the world, without making a significant contribution to the global fight against climate change.

We have worked to put in place unprecedented incentives to support the transition of European agriculture to greater sustainability, while rejecting agricultural decline.

Imported agricultural products that do not meet our production standards should not be marketed in the EU, it is a question of consistency. We have obtained recognition of the essential nature of reciprocity of standards to protect our European model of agricultural production. The subject will be at the heart of the debates in the coming months through the implementation of concrete reciprocity tools.

The European rules of the new CAP will be simpler, and their philosophy has changed: thanks to our Rapporteur Anne Sander (LR), a “right to error” has been introduced, allowing national administrations to correct errors made in good faith by farmers.

Stronger anti-fraud tools will be put in place to fight against conflicts of interest and to put an end to those who abuse the system, like Czech Prime Minister A. Babis.

The new CAP will be fairer for farmers and a crisis reserve of at least €450 million will be established.

European farmers can count on five years of visibility, which is essential for investing and developing their business.

We are proud to have succeeded in defending the CAP against political forces that only see agriculture in terms of climate policy. We believe that farmers are the best allies for an ambitious environmental policy. Let’s be careful to defend them, not to overwhelm them with an ideological approach and excessive bureaucracy. The EPP will be very vigilant against any drift by the European Commission in this area.

My column in l’Opinion

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