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Agricultural activity has a strategic role through its multifunctional contribution to the economy and the wellbeing of the consumers and farmers, as well as through its role in the sustainable management of natural resources and combating climate change. Competitiveness of European Agriculture plays a crucial role in an open market, especially in the context of the WTO talks and their potential outcome. Proposals for the CAP reform must be carefully balanced with the need to maintain stable food prices and the economic vulnerability of farmers in the aftermath of the ﬁnancial crisis.
The new CAP has the chance to address four major problems faced currently by the agricultural research and development activities in Europe, to promote: horizontal coordination of research priorities; ﬁnancial support to a level comparable with other competitors on the world market; business environment for the private research and public-private partnerships and delivery mechanisms at farm level to increase the uptake of the results.
Transparency along the food supply chain is vital. Price monitoring is the major tool to understand the markets so that we can improve on their transparency. Then, transparency can contribute market stability and subsequently farmers could be able to stay competitive in a rapidly changing environment.
The Policy Scenarios, recently presented, are focused on the intensity of the reform and the emphasis is on certain components of the policy. We consider that it would be useful to develop scenarios where different measures mixes are envisaged to reach the objectives of the reform.
The most important impact of the CAP reform policy scenarios might be related to the farmer’s income. It is also expected that the reform will generate a series of chain reactions to improve the functioning of the food supply chain. It is of great importance that the food chain actors have been included in the policy to balance the bargaining power along the agro - food chain.