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National Rural Network


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ENRD Newsletter July 2017



Issue 24 of the ‘EU Rural Review’ - the ENRD’s main thematic publication - on the topic of ‘Re-imagining Rural Business Opportunities’ is now available online.

It explores some of the latest thinking and practice in how rural entrepreneurship can be supported to take advantage of emerging opportunities and latent potential in order to develop new forms of successful rural business.

The publication was informed by the ENRD thematic work on ‘Rural Businesses’, which also featured a dedicated EAFRD Projects Brochure

For subscriptions to ENRD publications please write to subscribe@enrd.eu.

The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) “should continue to be managed at the EU level and […] helping farmers and protecting the environment should be its two main goals,” according to findings of the public consultation on the CAP. Read the full press release.

The results of the consultation were announced during the ‘CAP: Have your say’ conference (7 July 2017 – Brussels, Belgium), also highlighting the need for a simpler and less bureaucratic policy. Respondents identified clear aims for the future CAP such as ensuring a fair standard of living for farmers and effectively encouraging them to play their part in tackling climate change and protecting the environment.

For additional information, see:

•opening speech of Agriculture and Rural Development Commissioner Phil Hogan; and

•Commission Reflection Paper on the ‘Future of the EU Finances’, outlining possible options and scenarios to provide a basis for further debate on the future direction of the EU budget, including that of the CAP.

The Guidance for the implementation of LEADER Cooperation activities under the 2014-2020 Rural Development Programmes (RDPs), produced by the European Commission’s DG AGRI, has been updated.

The updated document includes the proposals of a dedicated ENRD Practitioner-led Working Group. For additional information, see also LEADER/CLLD Cooperation factsheets and ‘landscape’, overviewing relevant rules and procedures in national and regional RDPs.

The 8th NRNs’ Meeting (26-28 June 2017 – Jyväskylä Region, Finland) discussed new networking tools and methods to support the implementation of the Cork 2.0 Declaration in Rural Development Programme (RDP) delivery.

The meeting used a methodology called ‘Innovation Camp’ to develop new ideas on the themes of innovation, communications, simplification, and ‘rural proofing’ to take forward the work of the rural networks.

The ideas generated included: fostering and celebrating innovation with an EU-wide Innovation Day; developing rural apps through an interactive game for children; creating a specific Network Support Unit for young people; making certain that NRNs ‘steal’ good ideas from one another; making networks more active on ‘rural proofing’ practices; and putting simplification into action.

Apply to the new EU-China Young Farmers Programme and get an opportunity to go on a study tour in China to learn about and exchange on modern practices in agriculture and rural development. The application deadline is 10 September 2017. 

The exchange programme, jointly organised by the EU and the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture, will send European young farmers on two-week study visits to China (November 2017 and June 2018) and welcome their Chinese counterparts to EU Member States.


Save the date! A European seminar building on experiences and lessons from putting Community-led Local Development (CLLD) in practice will take place on 8-10 November 2017, in Győr, Hungary.

The event will discuss how CLLD is applied in rural and coastal areas, how it can be used to promote inclusion, as well as its new urban and social dimensions.

This is the third in a series of CLLD seminars organised jointly by the four EU Commission Directorates-General managing the European Structural and Investment Funds, following one in Båstad, Sweden (December 2016) and one in Edinburgh, UK (December, 2015).

EU support to young farmers should be better targeted to foster effective generational renewal, according to the latest report by the European Court of Auditors.

The report highlights that while Rural Development policy is well suited to address young farmers’ needs, a better definition of objectives and application of selection criteria are needed to prioritise the best projects. It concludes on a set of recommendations for making the aid more effective.

Two new case studies published by the OECD examine synergies and trade-offs between agricultural productivity and climate change mitigation and adaptation in the Netherlands and France.

The case studies explore the extent to which agricultural and other policies can achieve compatibility between higher productivity and climate change objectives. Finally, the papers review the overall success of the policy framework and make recommendations for improvement in each case.

A recent publication by the European Parliament’s Think Tank examines structural change in EU farming, seeking to answer the question “How can the CAP support a 21st century European model of agriculture?”.

The study explores farm structural change separately in Western and in Central and Eastern Europe, and goes on to identify ways of strengthening food value chains in the EU.

A new publication by Science for Environment Policy (within the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Environment) explores the impacts of Agri-environmental Schemes on European farming, with a particular focus on biodiversity and ecosystem services.

Based on scientific research, the publication provides suggestions to further improve the design and uptake of the schemes and related measures in order to secure even greater effectiveness and environmental protection in the future.

A new #EUFarmRecipies book – recently launched by COPA-COGECA, the association of farmers and agri-cooperatives in the EU – showcases recipes from across the EU, “each with a story to tell”.

The book is intended to bring consumers closer to agriculture, explaining how the food was produced and the history behind each recipe, thus showing consumers the real value of their food.

See more information on the ENRD website

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