A Commission proposal creating, for the first time, a common financial framework covering the whole food chain was endorsed yesterday by the European Parliament. This framework with a budget of almost €1.9 billion covering the period 2014-2020 will fund priorities in the area of food and feed.
It will underpin the animal, plant and control package of reforms adopted by the Commission in May 2013 which will simplify the regulatory environment and reduce the administrative burden on food business operators.
The financial framework aims to support and complement EU Member States’ efforts to contribute to a high level of food safety through:
– More risk-based approach to animal health requirements
– More effective controls/enforcement along the agri-food chain
– Enhanced disease preparedness
– Increased disease prevention for listed diseases
– Reduced administrative burden and economic losses due to disease outbreaks
– Defined roles and responsibilities of food business operators; health professionals and veterinarians
The available funding for EU Member States will be distributed as follows:
– 65% on animal health programmes
– 6.9 % on plant protection programmes
– 19.9% on official control programmes
– 7% on emergency measures
– 1% to the Consumers, Health and Food Executive Agency (Chafea) which will implement some specific programmes
This framework will directly benefit all national and European public authorities regulating the agri-food chain: food business operators including producers, processors and distributors with a stake in ensuring the food chain is more responsive to environmental, demographic and social challenges. The programme will indirectly benefit all EU citizens, through access to a high level of safety, increased choice and more competitive prices.
The idea is to contribute to a high level of health for humans, animals and plants, while protecting consumers and the environment, and creating one single, clear and modern financial framework for animal health, animal welfare, plant health and official controls.
Today’s European Parliament vote paves the way for the budget to become available in the coming weeks.
The Common financial framework for the food chain is about fostering a high level of safety in the European agri-food chain where consumers have confidence that the food that arrives on their plates is safe. Moreover, the framework will contribute to the objectives of the EU2020 strategy given that the agri-food industry is the second largest economic sector in the EU, employing over 48 million people and is worth some €750 billion per year by providing a dynamic market environment where food business operators can contribute to economic growth.