The Cap

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What possible reforms to the European Union's Common Agricultural Policy would you advocate or advise against, and why?”

Words: 1200.

Nowadays, the European Union is facing many challenges regarding possible reforms for the Common Agricultural Policy. Indeed, big farmers benefit much more than small ones. There are rising issues relating to food security due to growing population, climate change and environmental degradation. What are the reforms they could implement that have a positive impact or actually a worse consequence? The few reforms that could be positive are the ones that encourage competition, consolidation and sustainability. While direct payments and capping are not the right solutions, taxing and training of farmers seem to become the necessary ones. Encouraging environmental protection is also a necessity through set-aside policy. This leads to confirm that the EU should progressively switch towards free trade.

Direct payments to farmers do not reduce the gap between small farmers and big farmers, as the support is mostly given to big farmers. Indeed, the problem is that the EU supports financially the wrong farmers as payments are for farmland owners. However, 40% of EU farmers work on lands that do not belong to them. 45% of every euro of direct payment benefits non-farming landowners rather than farmers (R. Baldwin and C. Wyplosz). The distribution of payments is unfair and unequal. Another inaccurate reform is direct income subsidies for small farmers so as to prevent the gap between them and big farmers. The core problem of the EU is that the big farmers are developing quickly. By trying to give subsidies to small farmer, the EU encourages them to stay out of competition by remaining small so as to keep on obtaining income support. However, big farmers have cached on, as they tend to split their farms into different entities making them appear smaller to get subsidies. Therefore, the problem is that through direct...
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