Illustration - Photo: wikipedia

Agriculture Minister: EU agricultural policy ‘should focus on farmers’

"Farmers should again be in the focus of the European Union's agricultural policy," Istvan Nagy, the minister of agriculture, said on Thursday, adding that the matter would be high on the agenda of the Hungarian EU presidency in the second half of the year.

In the next cycle the contribution of farming to efforts against climate change should be calculated “with regard to the fact that European farmers guarantee the security of food supplies and ensure fundamental public services to all citizens of the community”, the ministry quoted Nagy as saying after talks with Janusz Wojciechowski, European commissioner for agriculture.

“Food sovereignty must be made part of the EU’s strategic sovereignty,” the minister said.

Europe’s farming sector “must be relieved of the extreme and wishful green ideology forced upon it in recent years… There can be no greater offence to European farmers than saying that they are the most responsible for climate change,” Nagy said. “Just the opposite is true, because they suffer from it and it is farmers that do the most to sustain our created world,” he added.

The Hungarian presidency will work to have the European Council make a proposal for the next European Commission aimed at a new Common Agricultural Policy for the post-2007 period that “could restore the upturned balance between environmental and competitiveness aspects,” Nagy said.

He called increased support for family farms, which “make up the backbone of traditional European agriculture”, adding that such farms were put at a disadvantage by their small size.

Nagy also called support for young farmers from a generation “open to novelties, digital and precision equipment which is indispensable for the long-term competitiveness of the agriculture,” the statement said.

Leave a Reply