European Commission – Press Release
Promoting the tastes of Europe
Brussels, 30 March 2012 – The European Commission has today adopted a Communication entitled 'Promotion measures and information provision for agricultural products: a reinforced value‑added strategy for promoting the tastes of Europe'. The Communication is the second stage of the promotion policy reform process launched in July 2011, which aims to make the agriculture and agri‑food sector more dynamic and more competitive and to promote sustainable, intelligent and inclusive growth.
On this occasion Dacian Cioloș, Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, said: 'The European Union has a good hand to play to make its economy more dynamic and boost growth and jobs by further optimising the benefits of its agricultural and agri‑food products, both on the European market and world markets. Exports in this sector already represent more than €100 billion. In an increasingly open world, the success of European agriculture also depends on its capacity to strengthen and develop its position. This entails new ambition for our promotion policy and putting in place a real Community strategy for optimising the use of our products.'
This new ambition is expressed in the key objectives set for the future promotion policy, centred around four themes:
This Communication reflects the in‑depth consideration launched in July 2011 by the adoption of a Green Paper1 about the policy of information and promotion for agricultural products which was a leading initiative to strengthen the competitiveness of EU agriculture and which generated a broad public debate, as well as the information in the report on the external evaluation carried out in 2011 on the present promotion policy2.
This document opens the debate on the content of the future promotion policy at interinstitutional level. Once these discussions have been concluded, the Commission will present legislative proposals before the end of the year.
The EU rules in force on information and promotion in the agri‑food sphere were drawn up in the 1980s. They have been adapted over the years, particularly thanks to the increase in the number of quality labels. The EU budget spent on promotion under Council Regulation (EC) No 3/2008 was €47 million in 2011 and €55 million is earmarked for 2012.
Between 2001 and 2011, 518 programmes were approved, mainly three‑year programmes, representing a total of €576 million from the EU budget. (NB: These programmes must be cofinanced by the proposing organisations and may be the subject of a financial contribution by the Member States). For the period 2001‑2011, the majority of the programmes were centred on the EU market (70% by number and value of programmes) and about 9% were multinational programmes (borne by several Member States).
This horizontal promotion system coexists with other promotion measures within the CAP, implemented within the framework of the Common Organisation of the Market [wine sector for third countries (€112 million in 2011) and the fruit and vegetable sector, through producer organisations' operational programmes (€34 million on average in 2008/09)], as well as within the framework of Rural Development.