FiBL study shows that reforming the Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) can better support farmers and encourage them to deliver public goods

A recent report on the CAP by the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL) was released by IFOAM EU on 10 April. Titled Towards a new public goods payment model for remunerating farmers under the CAP Post-2020, it explores smart and cost-efficient ways to reform the EU Common Agricultural Policy, focusing on rewarding farmers for the public goods that they bring to society and rural areas with a special focus on protecting the environment.

The recommendations of the report are ambitious, yet realistic, and build upon the architecture of the current CAP and the Commission’s CAP Communication of 2017. The focus is on further developing voluntary robust measures under pillar II of the CAP, while increasingly mainstreaming sustainability measures in pillar I with a new and more ambitious scheme to replace the current greening measures. In addition, it introduces the underlying principle of a resultsoriented CAP, where objectives are clear, and a farm’s performance is assessed by objective agricultural sustainability assessment tools (e.g. SMART). This results-oriented approach bases compensation on performance, allowing farmers to use their potential as ‘sustainable entrepreneurs’.

With the post-2020 CAP reform process well under way and the Commission proposal expected by the end of May, this report represents another important contribution of the organic movement to this debate.

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