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The monthly bulletin of LEAP (European Laboratory of Political Anticipation) - 15 Jun 2018

Europe 2019-2024: From an agricultural crisis to a food crisis?

The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), which is supposed to guarantee food independence and food quality for all Europeans, has been in crisis for many years without the citizens seeing any simple and coherent project appearing on the horizon of their common alimentary future.[1] The issues are quite obvious however: European arable lands must produce food for the Europeans. As second priority, within the limits of the maintenance of a healthy agriculture (food quality) and respect for the environment, the surpluses can provide material for exportation. Agricultural production must be accessible to all on the continent and farmers should be able to live decently from their work.

However, faced with these principles of common sense, the Europeanisation of Monsanto through its acquisition by Bayer suggests that the ‘Grand Regulator of Brussels’ will be subject to a considerable strengthening of the lobbying power of an industry that offers genetic manipulation and the poisoning of anything in the natural world that is not immediately edible as unique answers to the challenge of feeding 7 billion people. Yet, before feeding 7 billion people, we must feed 500 million in the most intelligent way possible; an intelligence that will come only from competition and probably from the combination of numerous solutions currently available in Europe and around the world.[2]

Certainly, the CAP needs to be reformed or even reinvented; perhaps removed in favour of a more flexible and modern system. As for the goals that the CAP initially served, they do not change.

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