EUR 28m EU support for the promotion of agricultural products

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The European Commission has approved 16 programmes in 12 Member States (Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, Latvia, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom) to provide information on and to promote agricultural products in the European Union. The total budget of the programmes running between one and three years is € 62.1 million, of which the EU will contribute € 27.8 million. The selected programmes cover organic products, dairy products, meat, wine, fruit and vegetables, olive oil, honey and flowers.

“I am pleased to say that this decision also covers promotion of dairy products” said Mariann Fischer Boel, Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development. “As we announced on Wednesday, promotion is one of the ways we aim to help our dairy producers out of the current crisis. We are now launching an accelerated procedure to increase support to the promotion of dairy products, with a budget of € 20 million.”

Background

On 17 December 2007 the Council merged the two existing EU Regulations on information provision and promotion measures in a single EU Regulation 3/2008, covering both the internal market and third countries 1 (see IP/07/699 ).

The measures financed within this framework can consist of public relations, promotional or publicity actions, in particular highlighting the advantages of EU products, especially in terms of quality, hygiene, food safety, nutrition, labelling, animal welfare or environment-friendliness of their production. These measures can also cover participation at events and fairs, information campaigns on the EU system of protected designations of origin (PDO), protected geographical indications (PGI) and traditional speciality guaranteed (TSG), information on EU quality and labelling systems and organic farming, Information campaigns on the EU system of quality wines produced in specified regions (QWPSR) are also amongst the possibilities.

The EU finances up to 50% of the cost of these measures (up to 60 % in programmes promoting the consumption of fruit and vegetable by children or concerning information on responsible drinking patterns and harm linked to hazardous alcohol consumption), the remainder being met by the professional/inter-branch organisations which proposed them and/or by the Member States concerned.

The detailed rules for applying those promotion and information measures are laid down by a Commission Regulation 2 , It lists the themes and products that can be covered by the promotion measures.

Each year, by 30 November, interested professional organisations can submit their proposals to the Member States, These then have to send the Commission the list of programmes they have selected and a copy of each programme, Subsequently the Commission evaluates the programmes and decides on their eligibility,

The full list of programmes and budgets adopted today is available in annex.

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