A radical CAP reform is necessary but would not happen without the public pressure
The Conference “The CAP: have you say” is over. I am quite happy that it was possible to follow it online without all that travel to Brussels. For example it was even possible to go and move the electric fences of my sheep during the lunchbreak – something that would not be possible from abroad.
The most important part of the conference was the presentation of the results of the public consultation that had ended in May. Of course only a short overview could be presented there, but luckily the report itself has also been made available on the web. It is clear from the document that public views on CAP differ a lot. However the support for a radical reform is clear.
In is noteworthy that the question “To what extent does the current CAP successfully address these environmental challenges?” (the previous question was about environmental challenges faced by agriclture) was replied “not at all” by the majority of the respondents (46% of the total). Only 8% of the respondents consider that the current CAP successfully address these environmental challenges “To a large extent” and 6% “To a fairly good extent”. Even more significant is the consensus between the farmers and other respondents on this matter.
The case for a radical CAP reform is thus clear, if we are talking seriously about sustainability and policy coherence. Listening to the politicians and top civil servants however one did not get the impression of readiness for a real change. The civil society has therefore to keep the pressure up – having participated in the public consultation is not ehough.
Post author: Aleksei Lotman