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Investigation: Majority of EU Parliament agriculture committee linked to industry

24 May 2018
by greenpeace -- last modified 24 May 2018

A majority of MEPs on the European Parliament's agriculture committee have strong links to the farming industry, Greenpeace research has revealed.


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Greenpeace warned that public health and the environment could be at risk if the European Parliament gives the agriculture committee an exclusive lead role in the reform of the EU's Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). Greenpeace is calling for the meaningful involvement of MEPs with a wider range of expertise.

Researchers found that 25 of the 46 MEPs on the agriculture committee are farmers, former farmers, shareholders in agricultural businesses, have represented the farming lobby or otherwise have strong ties to the farming industry. A further four MEPs on the committee have looser links to the farming industry, such as close family members who are farmers.

Greenpeace EU agriculture policy director Marco Contiero said: "There is no question that farming expertise has a vital role to play in the reform of EU agriculture rules, but farming affects a lot more than the farming industry and this should be reflected in the policy process. The European Parliament should give policy-makers with expertise on public health and the environment a real say on the future of agriculture in the EU."

The next CAP, which will cover the years 2021-2027, will be negotiated between national governments and the European Parliament. The European Parliament has not decided yet whether the agriculture committee will again play a solo leading role in determining the Parliament's position on CAP, or whether the environment, health and food safety committee will have joint responsibility. The Parliament is expected to reach a final decision on this shortly after the European Commission publishes its policy proposal for the new CAP, which is scheduled for 1 June.

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