On the first day of the two-day meeting in Luxembourg, EU agriculture and fisheries ministers held a discussion on challenges and progress in the preparation of CAP strategic plans and on the revision of EU marketing standards for agricultural products. Negotiations on the fixing of fishing opportunities in the Baltic Sea for 2022 have also started.
The focus at the Council was on addressing challenges and progress in the preparation of the national strategic plans for the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). The member states welcomed today’s discussion as the plans cover both pillars of the CAP, are based on a strategic approach and give countries the opportunity to implement interventions in a common framework that respond to their needs. At the end of the discussion, the Chair of the EU Council, Minister Podgoršek, said, “Ministers today reported on the progress and challenges they face in preparing plans. The work is not easy, as preparation requires the transparent drawing up of plans, involving all stakeholders and key partners. At the same time, we are aware that we must submit our plans to the European Commission by the end of the year. After today’s discussion, I can say that I am still optimistic that the countries will succeed in carrying out this important task by the end of the year, ensuring the new CAP can be implemented as planned”.
The ministers also discussed the revision of EU marketing standards for agricultural products in line with the recommendations of the Farm to Fork Strategy. Minister Podgoršek mentioned, “One of the priorities of the Slovenian Presidency is the revision of rules on honey labelling. I have therefore asked the ministers to consider, in the context of the wider debate on marketing standards and sustainability, how best to update these rules to ensure greater transparency regarding the origin of honey. The proposal received broad support from member states. We agreed that the indication of the country of origin of honey on the product label must be clear and not misleading,” said Minister Podgoršek.
On the first day of the meeting, ministers also provided information on other topics relating to the pork sector, the recent G20 meeting and the review of the European quality policy.
In the morning, the ministers responsible for fisheries discussed fishing opportunities in the Baltic Sea and exchanged opinions on consultations on fisheries with the United Kingdom and Norway for 2022. Negotiations on the fixing of fishing opportunities in the Baltic Sea for 2022 have also been launched; delegations are keen to reach an agreement at this meeting of the Council.