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Agriculture - Planting the seeds for sustainable farming and forestry
“To describe the general economic environment and current situation of agriculture and the fruit and vegetables and olive oil sectors in the Mediterranean region.”

The problem

The 1995 Barcelona Agreement provided for the creation of a Free Trade Zone in the Mediterranean Basin. This includes 11 non-EU members, whose main exports, fruit, vegetables and olive oil, compete with similar products from Member States Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece, and to a lesser extent, France. With added impetus from the current World Trade Organisation negotiations and CAP reform, it is vital for the EU to understand better the trade and market policies in the Mediterranean area if it is to develop policies and mechanisms for the orderly development of the region and markets.

MEDFROL  Farming around the Mediterranean


The project will produce:

  • A database to describe the macroeconomic and agricultural environments, national agricultural policies, the fruit, vegetable and olive oil sectors in the 13 non-EU states. It will compare their key statistics with those of Mediterranean EU Members, and describe their supply chains
  • Four statistical and econometric models to analyse the productivity and efficiency of the sectors, import demand, policy and trade models, and an input-output model to evaluate the impact of different trade and policy scenarios
  • A final report of findings, plus policy implications

Contribution to policy development:

  • More robust science-based advice to policy-makers, including an up-to-date and harmonised set of policies and production and trade data for the region and individual sectors
  • MEDFROL will measure the rate of convergence in policy and practice between EU and non-EU states, and therefore into future potential liberalisation of agricultural trade and policy
  • Allow identification of states that would benefit from stronger cooperation with the EU

Project deliverables

  • Executive summaries of national agricultural policies in force in Mediterranean countries – November 2004
  • Executive summary of the agricultural situation in the Mediterranean – March 2005
  • Descriptions of supply chains in Germany and The Netherlands for fruit & vegetables and olive oil – May and June 2005 respectively
  • Import demand report for fruit & vegetables and olive oil – November 2005
  • Trade model description – December 2005
  • Report on input-output analysis and policy implications – November 2006
  • Final progress report to European Commission and dissemination plan – March 2007


  • Website with public access on completion of project
  • Annual progress reports
  • Two-to-four page newsletter, up to three editions – ongoing
  • Workshop and seminar to discuss findings – ongoing
  • Results published in scientific journals and at international conferences – ongoing
  • Final activity and management report – March 2007

Technical information

Project acronym: MEDFROL
Project’s official full title: Market and Trade Policies for Mediterranean Agriculture: The case of fruit/vegetable and olive oil
Research priority: 1.1. Modernisation and sustainability of agriculture and forestry, including their multifunctional role in order to ensure the sustainable development and promotion of rural areas   
Specific webpage: Details not yet available
Proposal/contract no: 502459
Start date: 1 April 2004
Kick off meeting: April 2004
Completion date: 28 February 2007
European Commission scientific officer: Hans-Jörg Lutzeyer (

Name: Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Chania
Abbreviated name: MAICh/CIHEAM
Address: Alsyllio Agrokepiou, PO Box 85, Crete Chania 73100
Country: Greece
Tel: +30 28210 35000
Fax: 30 28210 35001


Name: Centro de Investigacion en Economia y Desarrollo Agroalimentarios
Abbreviated name: CREDA
Country: Spain

Name: Sveriges Lantbruksuniversitet
Abbreviated name: SLU
Country: Sweden

Name: Institut fur Agrarpolitik und Marktforschung, Universitaet Giessen
Abbreviated name: IAM/JLU 
Country: Germany

Name: Wageningen University, Dept of Social Sciences, Marketing & Consumer Behaviour Group
Abbreviated name: Wageningen UR
Country: The Netherlands

Name: Agricultural Research Institute
Abbreviated name: ARI
Country: Cyprus

Name: Ege University, Faculty of Agriculture, Dept. of Agricultural Economics
Abbreviated name: EUZF
Country: Turkey

Name: National School of Agriculture
Abbreviated name: ENA- MEKNES
Country: Morocco

Name: Laboratoire de Recherches en Economie Rurale, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique de Tunisie
Abbreviated name: INRAT
Country: Tunisia