The future of EU agriculture – a strategic dialogue of stakeholders

Przyszłość rolnictwa UE – dialog strategiczny zainteresowanych stron

The European Commission has launched a strategic dialogue. The future of EU agriculture is a topic that still needs to be clarified. It is necessary to shape a common vision for the area and the entire EU food system. The dialogue was announced by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in her 2023 State of the Union address. and formally launched on January 25, 2024. It is a meeting of a diverse group of stakeholders in the European agri-food sector to find common solutions for all concerned.

Strategic dialogue: the future of EU agriculture and its goals

The Strategic Dialogue on the Future of EU Agriculture aims to develop a shared vision of the future EU agricultural and food system by actors from every stage of the agri-food chain, including farmers, cooperatives, agribusinesses and rural communities, as well as NGOs and civil society representatives, financial institutions and academia.

The strategic dialogue will address challenges and opportunities, such as ensuring an adequate standard of living for farmers and other rural residents, supporting agriculture while taking into account the limitations of our planet and its ecosystems, taking advantage of the vast opportunities offered by knowledge and technological innovation, and promoting a successful future for the EU food system in a competitive world. The dialogue, by bringing together different perspectives, can serve to support the creation of new solutions and develop a common vision by the summer of 2024.

Who can participate in the strategic dialogue on the future of EU agriculture?

The dialogue will be attended by representatives of associations and organizations at the EU level, representing a range of interest groups. As major players in all, diverse parts of the EU agri-food value chain, they have in-depth knowledge and experience.

A prerequisite for a successful strategic dialogue is to have a balanced and representative group that reflects the richness and diversity of all stakeholders. The selected actors represent different segments of the agricultural and food system (including farmers, cooperatives, agribusinesses and rural communities), as well as NGOs and civil society representatives, financial institutions and academia.

In order to allow targeted and lively interaction, the number of representatives who will be able to attend the meetings is limited. Those who are not directly represented will be asked to provide their opinions and comments through a special “Express Your Opinion” portal. More details will be available on the website of the Strategic Dialogue on the Future of Agriculture in the EU. The inaugural meeting was held on January 25, and the schedule of subsequent meetings will be determined and published in the coming weeks.

Professor Peter Strohschneider, who has many years of experience in a similar position at the German Federal Government-appointed Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the German Economy, was appointed chairman of the dialogue. The Future of Agriculture. Participants will work on a common vision of the future, taking into account different points of view. According to the plans, by summer 2024. a report and the main conclusions of the interviews will be presented.

Importance of agriculture in the EU

According to the EC website, Europe’s agri-food sector provides safe, healthy and affordable food for 450 million people. More than 17 million people work in this EU sector, and the average age of a farmer is 57. This provides tremendous opportunities to change and adapt strategies to the modern world.

EU activities in the field of agriculture

One of the EU’s core agricultural activities is the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). In 2023. The European Commission has launched a five-year support system in the form of its update. There will be €300 billion in funding and stronger incentives to push farmers toward more sustainable and resilient practices. Under the policy, farmers are also to receive additional compensation for their crops if they reduceCO2 emissions.

In the strategic plans of the Common Agricultural Policy, member states provide more support to those who need it most. For example, more than 10 percent. EU direct payments, or €4 billion a year, will go to smaller farms. Support for emergencies caused by natural disasters and price shocks has also been increased. In 2023. Additional aid of more than 500 million euros has been provided to farmers hardest hit by the crisis.

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