The Advisory Groups bring together, on the Commission's invitation, representatives of the various social and economic interests. These representatives are nominated for membership by organisations established at Community level. The Groups enable the Commission to be aware of the range of views these organisations hold on individual agricultural production sectors, rural development etc.
As from July 2014 the current Advisory Groups will be replaced with the new Civil Dialogue Groups.
The Commission can consult the Groups on any matter relating to the common agricultural and rural development policies.
The chairperson of any Group may propose that the Commission consult it on a particular matter falling within its area of competence. If a Group unanimously adopts an opinion the Commission, on the Group's request, notifies the outcome of its discussions to the other Institutions.
The Commission is not bound by Group opinions but takes them very seriously and notifies the Group membership of its action in response to them.
The social and economic interest categories represented are:
- agricultural producers and producer cooperatives,
- agricultural and food-manufacturing industries,
- traders in agricultural products and foodstuffs,
- workers in agriculture and food-manufacturing,
- environmentalists, and animal welfare organisations.
A Commission Decision of 23 April 2004 recast the agricultural advisory group arrangements to make them correspond more adequately to the priorities of the common agricultural policy as reformed in 1999 and 2003, take account of the European Union enlargement of 2004, and intensify dialogue with Union-level organisations representing social and economic interests.
The distribution of places on the Groups reflects the appearance of new European organisations in fields such as the environment, protection of animals and rural development to which the reformed CAP attaches greater importance.
Each Group may, in agreement with the Commission, set up working groups to facilitate its work.
Each year around 2000 experts serve on the Groups. There are approximately 85 meetings a year.
Minutes of the Advisory Group meetings and further documents
You can access the minutes of the Advisory group meetings as well as further meeting documents by clicking on the name of the Advisory group you are interested in (see the list in the right-hand column).
Please note that the opinions expressed in the minutes represent the point of view of the meeting participants from agriculturally related NGOs at Community level. These opinions cannot, under any circumstances, be attributed to the European Commission. Neither the European Commission nor any person acting on behalf of the Commission is responsible for the use which might be made of the following information. This also applies to the other meeting documents published on this website, if they are not Commission documents.