Luxembourg: small state seeks major agricultural change after covid (1/2)

The effect of the crown virus crisis on the agricultural sector in Luxembourg – closed borders, labor shortages, etc. – enables us, on the scale of this small country, to reflect on the strengths and weaknesses of European agriculture, on its resilience, but also on international dependence. flows.

With 2,600 square kilometers, half of which is agricultural products, Luxembourg is the second smallest state in the EU. 660,000 inhabitants, 200,000 cross-border workers daily, its GDP per capita is among the highest in the world. The Grand Duchy is known for its banks and is less known for its agriculture. But it is rural and tied to its agricultural productions and to its 3,000 farmers.

Our guests :

Romain Schneider, Luxembourg Minister for Agriculture. For us, he looks back on the difficult weeks that the country’s farmers experienced when the European borders were closed. Luxembourg’s agriculture knows no bounds: 8% of Luxembourg farmers’ land lies with their neighbors!

Janusz Wojciechowski, European Commissioner for Agriculture. While the CAP budget was on a downward trend, the coronavirus crisis was a game changer. He estimates in our show that “the EU proposal has improved significantly by a further € 26 billion since the pandemic, ie 2% more than the financial perspective for the next seven years originally planned”.. It is also developing for us the agricultural-to-fork strategy that the Commission wants to introduce in the context of the new European “green deal”.

Our reports:

– “Luxembourg agriculture plays the wall passport”, by Luke Brown. An account of the difficulties encountered by Luxembourg farmers during the Covid-19 crisis: lack of seasonal workers from Eastern Europe and farmers forced to take long detours to their fields outside the borders … He explains to us how Luxembourg’s agriculture is dependent on its neighbors and open limits. The appropriate name Cuvée Schengen could not be sold …

– “Spanish olives and lambs await European aid”, by Anaïs Guérard. The emblematic Iberian sectors, such as lamb and olive oil, were severely affected by the crisis. Food business owners and players hope to survive thanks to EU storage aid.

A program presented by Caroline de Camaret, produced by Johan Bodin, with pictures by Stéphane Bodenne, and participation by Luke Brown, Céline Schmitt, Catherine Nicholson, Perrine Desplats and Mathilde Bénézet.

Measures co-financed by the European Union. This publication reflects the views of the author only, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.