`Less Support for Spain’s Traditional Growers in New CAP, Expert Warns - Olive Oil Times

Less Support for Spain’s Traditional Growers in New CAP, Expert Warns

By Daniel Dawson
Jan. 17, 2022 11:33 UTC

Spain’s pro­posed national strate­gic plan to imple­ment the lat­est iter­a­tion of Europe’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) will not pro­vide as much assis­tance to tra­di­tional olive grow­ers as pre­vi­ously hoped.

Mercedes Morán, the for­mer direc­tor-gen­eral of agri­cul­tural pol­icy for the autonomous com­mu­nity of Extremadura and a mem­ber of the team of experts that con­sulted on the CAP, said tra­di­tional olive grow­ers will receive less aid and face more hur­dles in acquir­ing it.

She told Agropopular the fund­ing that Minister of Agriculture Luis Planas pre­vi­ously pledged to tra­di­tional grow­ers now has become a sec­toral pro­gram to which only €30 mil­lion will be allo­cated per year.”

See Also:Andalusian Officials Criticize Loss of Funding for Farmers in Proposed CAP

Instead of dis­trib­ut­ing funds directly to the farm­ers, the gov­ern­ment will give the money to pro­ducer orga­ni­za­tions.

These orga­ni­za­tions will have to com­ply with new gov­ern­ment reg­u­la­tions that have yet to be deter­mined in order to receive the funds and must present the gov­ern­ment with an oper­a­tional pro­gram.

These oper­a­tional pro­grams must be multi-year plans that include actions to invest in effi­cient energy use, improved worker con­di­tions, qual­ity assur­ance pro­grams, soil con­ser­va­tion and tan­gi­ble assets.

For farm­ers to receive any fund­ing under the national strate­gic plan, they must have a cer­tain vol­ume of pro­duc­tion from tra­di­tional groves.

The gov­ern­ment has also clar­i­fied its def­i­n­i­tion of what con­sti­tutes a tra­di­tional olive farm for oil pro­duc­tion: they must be dry-land groves with a max­i­mum den­sity of 140 trees per hectare, a slope greater than or equal to 20 per­cent or the olive trees must be grown in ter­races.

However, the def­i­n­i­tion for what con­sti­tutes tra­di­tional table olive pro­duc­tion may be deter­mined by the autonomous com­mu­ni­ties.

According to Juan Vilar Strategic Consultants, tra­di­tional groves make up about 70 per­cent of all Spanish olive farms.

Spain’s Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food has pre­vi­ously said the sec­tor employs 350,000 work­ers, includ­ing 15,000 jobs in mills, and pays almost €32 mil­lion in wages annu­ally.

This is what has remained of the sup­port for tra­di­tional olive groves in the new CAP, which is far from what the min­is­ter promised at first and with a ridicu­lous bud­get,” Morán con­cluded.


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