Food industry reiterates CAP support

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Drink industry, European union

The latest data concerning the effects of reforming the
much-maligned Common Agricultural Policy - in particular the
'decoupling' of production levels and subsidies - has been welcomed
by the CIAA, although it warns that some smaller companies could be
adversely affected.

Yesterday we reported on the latest discussions on the proposed reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), which recommended the decoupling of production levels and subsidies - a move which it is hoped will lead to wider support for the proposals. The European food and drink industry was quick to respond to the latest analyses, reiterating its support for the changes to the CAP. In a statement, the CIAA (which represents the EU's food and drink industry) said that the reform process would increase the competitiveness of agri-food products both within the EU and on third country markets, as well as reinforcing consumer confidence. "For the food and drink industry, the CAP reform should above all promote a competitive, professional and efficient agricultural sector, " the CIAA said, adding that decoupling was one vital element of the process. But the CIAA also confirmed that a number of federations and sectors are concerned about the total deletion of the existing link between direct support and production, the impact it would have on farming and therefore the impact on their supply of raw materials. "SMEs, for whom the quality and quantity of local supply are essential, would be the first affected. A certain degree of market regulation might therefore be necessary to avoid severe market imbalances," the organisation said. The CIAA also reaffirmed its support for making payment of decoupled aid dependent on the respect of the regulatory requirements defined at Community level and good farming practices. "This will reinforce consumer confidence vis-à-vis the conditions for the production of Community raw materials, which are processed into foodstuffs." The federation also welcomed the reinforcement of rural development measures, within the context of the European strategy for sustainability which is supported by the European food and drink industry. "However, the CIAA regrets that, following the decision taken at the Brussels Summit to fix the budget for market measures and direct payments for 2007-2013, the Commission has had to lower the amounts allocated to rural development." The proposed reform of the CAP was first announced earlier this year and was broadly welcomed by the CIAA.

Related topics: Market Trends

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