Common Agricultural Policy: 60 years later

Scope and objectives

The EESC will hold on 4 May 2022 an online thematic debate on the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) in the context of its 60 year anniversary and of the terrible war in Ukraine. 

This debate aims to discuss with representatives of EU institutions and stakeholders how the national CAP strategic plans could provide a substantial contribution to the economic, social and environmental transition imposed by the European Green Deal. It will focus on ensuring European agriculture delivers its Green Deal objectives in a sustainable and resilient manner. The debate will also have a specific focus on how European agriculture has to adapt to the new conditions created by the war in Ukraine

This online event will take place during the NAT Section meeting of the EESC and will be webstreamed in FR/EN/DE.


2022 marks the 60th anniversary of the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). This policy was created as an open market for Europe’s agri-food products, providing high-quality and affordable food to citizens. It also helps maintain some of the world’s highest safety and environmental standards for agri-food products. With 10 million farmers in the EU, and around 40 million jobs in food processing, food retail and food services depending on agriculture, the CAP aims to ensure:

  • food security,
  • a fair standard of living for farmers,
  • preserve natural resources,
  • support vibrant rural areas and communities in the EU.

Since 1962, the CAP has adapted to new challenges through successive reforms. With the European Green Deal, which sets the Commission’s commitment to tackling climate and environment-related challenges, European farmers are recognised to be key actors to managing the transition to a sustainable and climate-neutral society. The new 2023-2027 common agricultural policy, and the way in which the Members States will deliver it through their national strategic plans, will be key to support these efforts while ensuring that prime producers have access to a decent revenue along with enhanced social protection and encouraging dynamic sector's support through innovation and new technologies.

For years, the EESC has been at the forefront of promoting a sustainable agriculture and a comprehensive EU food policy. The COVID-19 crisis and more recently the impacts of the war in Ukraine have demonstrated that getting food cannot be taken for granted, and that resilience, autonomy and sustainability of European agriculture, as well as inclusive food systems, are needed more than ever to ensure food security and affordability while promoting the true value of food. The implications of the EU trade of agricultural products and of the food and agricultural policies of countries beyond the European Union are also to be considered.

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