The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is the European Union’s primary instrument for providing support to farmers and ensuring a stable supply of food for its citizens.

Find your member state’s CAP strategic plan here: https://agriculture.ec.europa.eu/cap-my-
country/cap-strategic-plans-country_en

The Perfect Farm aligns with the EU’s Common Agricultural Strategic Plans by supporting farmers to adopt sustainable practices and access funding.

While the overall objectives of the CAP remain the same for all member states, such as ensuring food security, protecting the environment, and supporting rural communities, the specific measures and policies implemented in each country’s plan may vary.

The CAP Strategic Plans are designed to reflect the specific needs and priorities of each member state, that reflects the diversity and complexity of Europe’s agricultural sector, which means that they can differ significantly between countries.

Each country is required to develop its own plan, taking into account its unique agricultural sector, natural resources, and economic and social circumstances. They are intended to be flexible and adaptable, allowing member states to adjust their policies and measures in response to changing circumstances or new challenges. This means that the plans may evolve over time as countries gain experience with their implementation and as new priorities emerge.

Therefore, understanding the CAP Strategic Plans by country is essential for policymakers, stakeholders, and farmers to ensure the continued success and sustainability of the European agricultural sector.

Perfect Farm Flowers
Photo by Dan Meyers, Unsplash

CAP and the CAP Strategic Plans

Article adapted from: https://agriculture.ec.europa.eu/system/files/2023-04/approved-28-cap-
strategic-plans-2023-27.pdf

To help the EU farming sector cope with both local and global challenges, the new Common Agricultural Policy, adopted in December 2021, aims to contribute to the transition towards a smart, sustainable, competitive, resilient and diversified agricultural sector to ensure long-term food security. Priorities include providing support to boost income and resilience on farms, stepping up climate action, protecting natural resources, preserving and restoring biodiversity as well as strengthening the socio-economic fabric of rural areas. This is reflected in ten specific and one cross-cutting objectives, linked to common EU goals for social, environmental, and economic sustainability in agriculture and rural areas.

To deliver on these objectives, the CAP tailors support through national CAP Strategic Plans (CSPs), which are programming tools drafted by Member States and approved by the Commission. These Plans cover all the CAP-related and CAP-funded instruments that a Member State designed to implement in its territory over 2023-2027: direct payments, interventions specific for certain market sectors and support for rural development. This allows for a strategic approach to ensure all available tools are used in a complementary manner.

The Russian war against Ukraine and the commodity price surge have aggravated the already evident pressures from a changing climate, highlighting the integral link in addressing environment, climate action and food security objectives. Member States use their CAP Strategic Plans as a tool to: strengthen the resilience of the EU’s agricultural sector; reduce their dependence on synthetic fertilisers; transform their production capacity in line with more sustainable production methods; and promote the production of renewable energy.

While their design is based on the common policy legal framework, the Plans set out specific strategic choices related to financial allocation, specific requirements and priorities, which are linked to the farming structure, environmental challenges and other country- specific needs and factors which require tailored tools and solutions. In line with the shift to a more performance-based approach for implementing policy, the Plans also include a set of indicators with associated targets, which capture the expected effect of the interventions in response to the
specific needs of each Member State.