Three paths, one goal

Agriculture occupies a unique position at the heart of the European Union’s society, environment and economy.

Image: Common agricultural policy for a sustainable agriculture

Agricultural activity is sustained by good environmental conditions, which allow farmers to harness natural resources, create their produce and earn a living. In turn, the money brought in by agriculture sustains farm families and rural communities, while the food produced by agriculture sustains society as a whole.

The common agricultural policy (CAP) therefore combines social, economic, and environmental approaches on the path towards achieving a sustainable system of agriculture in the EU. Further steps in this path will be taken in the future CAP, which will be built around a new and more ambitious green architecture.

By taking this combined and ambitious approach, and by harnessing the latest advances in knowledge and innovation, the CAP aligns agriculture with the European Green Deal, which sets out to create an inclusive, competitive, and environmentally friendly future for Europe.

Farmers, agri-food businesses, foresters, and rural communities have an essential role to play in several of the Green Deal’s key policy areas, including:

  • building a sustainable food system through the Farm to Fork strategy;
  • adding to the new biodiversity strategy by protecting and enhancing the variety of plants and animals in the rural ecosystem;
  • contributing to the climate action of the Green Deal to achieve the goal of net-zero emissions in the EU by 2050;
  • supporting the updated forestry strategy, to be announced in 2020, by maintaining healthy forests;
  • contributing to a zero pollution action plan, to be set out in 2021, by safeguarding natural resources such as water, air and soil.

The actions taken in these areas will address some of the biggest challenges facing the EU in the coming years. By contributing to the solutions of these challenges, the CAP ensures that agriculture will remain at the heart of Europe for generations to come.

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