A new vision for agriculture
momagri, movement for a world agricultural organization, is a think tank chaired by Christian Pèes.
It brings together, managers from the agricultural world and important people from external perspectives,
such as health, development, strategy and defense. Its objective is to promote regulation
of agricultural markets by creating new evaluation tools, such as economic models and indicators,
and by drawing up proposals for an agricultural and international food policy.
A look at the news

The success story of German agriculture

September 30, 2013

On September 22, 2013, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU decisively won the German legislative elections, thus providing our editors an opportunity to focus on the specifics of German agriculture.

Following the 1990 reunification, Germany moved from a family-farming model to a liberal model, before undertaking an in-depth restructuration. In spite of a difficult adjustment to market forces in the 1990s, Germany can now claim to be a leading European agricultural power, whose competitive agro-food sector is widely envied in Europe.

German agricultural exports––mostly meat and dairy products––reached €63.9 billion in 2012, a seven percent increase. In addition, Germany is now the largest European producer of milk and pork, and the second largest agricultural producer behind France. Germany is building on two of the keys of its agricultural success––the concentration and specialization of farms, especially in livestock farming.

Consequently, the nation has, for the past few years, been striving to achieve food self-sufficiency and strengthen its position on global agricultural markets, and we must note that, in ten years, the upswing is remarkable. And this even while Germany still remains a net importer of agricultural products. Its imports reached close to €74 billion over the full year 2012.

In the name of agro-food competitiveness, Germany offers particularly favorable conditions to farmers: Flexible regulations, tax breaks, as well as innovative and targeted public aid programs. The German support policy to agriculture is thus quite different from that of its French neighbor. To take but one example, the average rate of subsidy per undertaking is 21 percent in France, against 29 percent in Germany.

As a result, Germany and France have opted for a widely differentiated application of European policy tools that are nevertheless identical. The situation does generate competitiveness gaps with other European nations, which are particularly concerned by social dumping practices they deem to be distortive.

Concerning the post-2013 CAP, a significant margin of autonomy will be granted to member states regarding first-pillar funds. One can bet that Germany will favor its farmers. Yet the risk of seeing more competitiveness distortions between member states is substantial, at a time when the new CAP has lost its common and agricultural character, with the threat of further enhancing deregulation, and the risks it can create.

“France and Germany – Together for a stronger Europe of Stability and Growth” was the title of a recent French-German common declaration. Let’s hope that preserving the strategic vision of agriculture––a crucial component for European growth––is also included in the requirements of the French-German special relationship…

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Paris, 24 June 2019