CAP Reform

Join Citizens' Call for Real Change


The vote in the Agricultural committee in January unravelled the European Commission's somewhat Green leaning proposal on CAP reform and resulted in an even less ambitious text. Capping the CAP, the proposal to place a limit on direct payments to each farm, is reduced to "optional" and applied at an incredible 300,000 euro. This results in 20% of the beneficiaries getting 80% of the funds. Greening elements including compulsory crop rotation, protection of permanent pastures and strong definition of ecological focus areas, have been weakened through the process and fail to aim put the EU on track towards an ecological transition. Export subsidies are maintained, and will continue to weaken the food economies of developing countries. Public money initially aimed to be used for rural development measures will partly be used to finance private insurance schemes. Since the negotiations on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) at the EU Council of 7-8 February, there is a new state of play on EU spending, including the CAP. Cuts were agreed in rural development, where they make no sense: 13 bn Euro less than in the 2007-2013 budget. Heads of States also decided to allow Member States to shift 15%-25% of Pillar II (rural development) money to direct payments in Pillar I (direct payments)[1]. The Greens/EFA group strongly opposes the outcomes of the vote in Committee as well as the result of the MMF negotiations. While the vote on the CAP budget share of the MFF will not be before July, on 13th March, the CAP reform legislative packages will be voted on in the European Parliament in Strasbourg. This vote is of crucial importance to take a position on how CAP money will best be spent to face the challenges for agriculture and for rural regions in general. The battle is not over: we must keep fighting for a better CAP at the plenary vote in March. Greens/EFA MEPs are now working to change the trend of the vote in committee. A real Green and Fair CAP reform focuses on two points:

1. REAL GREENING : No to the "less money, no greening approach"

Less money should not mean less Greening. Less money means we must use what remains intelligently and where it is most needed, and to create climate-friendly sustainable farming systems. We need efficient green spending of public money to respond to challenges like climate change, biodiversity loss, etc. That is why greening of the first pillar (e.g. crop rotation) is a must.   

2. FAIRNESS: There is enough money for a greener and solidarity focused CAP

Even with the cuts, there would still be enough money for a real paradigm shift towards sustainable farming systems and thriving economies and employment in rural regions. There must be fair spending of public money, i.e. Ceilings for direct payments to large farms, top-ups for smaller farms, transfer of funds to rural development for a more ecological infrastructure, and no dumping through export subsidies.

How can you help to change the CAP?

According to the polls highlighted in a recent study commissioned by WWF, 90% of EU citizens think that it’s important for farmers to deliver public goods in return for the subsidies they receive, compared to 7% who think that it’s not important. 78% of respondents think subsidies should be paid for measures to support sustainable agriculture and rural development; compared to 16% who think that subsidy payments should be based on the size of farms There are less than 2 weeks left to change the CAP and make it look closer to the way EU citizens want it!

You can take the floor now to show that citizens and voters are demanding a Green and Fair CAP reform!


The Greens/EFA food campaign visuals are pictured symbols of our key arguments. They directly relate to the topics that need to be raised in the CAP reform. Use them in your network and social media to show the broad citizens' call for a Green and Fair CAP reform!


The NGOs' initiative Go M.A.D (Go Meet a Deputy) calls upon Europe’s citizens to directly interact with their local Members of the European Parliament (MEP) and ask them how they will vote during the plenary decision on the CAP reform in Strasbourg in March 2013. This is the possibility for you to address not only Greens/EFA MEPs but also those from other Groups to make them all call for a Green and Fair CAP reform!


Friends of the Earth Europe has launched a new tool to mobilise citizens' and MEPs on crop rotation. It gives the possibility to TAKE ACTION to learn more about what is at stake regarding crop rotation, and send a message to your MEPs by Facebook, Twitter or email to encourage different crops instead of monocultures.


Nicolas Hulot Foundation has launched a petition to mobilise European governments to support a new model of agriculture.


Join the International demonstration in front of the European Parliament in Strasbourg next plenary, on the12th March 2013, one day before the vote on the CAP reform. We hope to see you there! More information on the demonstration on 12th March: We are on the final straight to the vote on the CAP reform. Your support is essential to say a last farewell to the old CAP. A last boost now can make all the difference.



[1] More details on the definition of 1st and 2d pillar here:

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