Promoting autonomous and sustainable food production: strategies for the Common Agricultural Policy post-2027

EESC opinion: Promoting autonomous and sustainable food production: strategies for the Common Agricultural Policy post-2027

Key points

The EESC considers that the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) post-2027:

  • must provide a stable long-term policy framework geared to sustainable food production and open strategic autonomy for the European Union, while protecting the diversity of types of farming in the EU and responding to societal and ecological needs ("public money for public goods"), alongside ensuring rural development;
  • must be a wake-up call shining a spotlight on the need to adequately support farmers through the transition; 
  • despite the fact that the share of the EU budget going to the CAP has fallen constantly over the past 40 years, being less than 25% in 2021, funding must be commensurate with its ambition to support a sustainable transition, and that basic income support based on surface should be gradually replaced by financial incentives to farmers for environmental and social services, with a reasonable transition period that may go beyond the scope of one single multiannual financial framework (MFF); 
  • alongside other policies and in order to stop the further drop in the number of farms in the EU, promote generational renewal through access to land, increase average earnings from farming, favourable investment conditions, empowerment of women, good labour conditions, improvement of long-term prospects for farmers, promoting the sustainable exploitation of abandoned or marginal land and extensive livestock breeding;
  • must preserve sustainable agricultural production throughout the EU and contribute to promote consumer demand in the EU for healthier and more sustainable diets, decrease food waste and regulate food markets to address the financialisation of the food sector;
  • should consider including counter-cyclical components and provide investment support schemes dedicated to renewable energy production at farm and local level in rural areas;
  • should be based on reinforced public/private partnerships for insurance schemes in response to the consequences of extreme climate conditions;
  • should support digital technologies that demonstrably contribute to the reduction of natural and environmental impacts, improvement of animal welfare or working conditions;
  • should foresee reviewed processes of designing and adapting the strategic plans to allow for stakeholder involvement, more flexibility for Member States and faster adaptations after their initial approval.