Content of the draft agriculture law presented to the Council of Ministers on Wednesday

The long-awaited draft orientation law on agriculture, centered on “food sovereignty” and the “renewal of generations”, is set to be discussed at the Council of Ministers for adoption in the summer. This text has been revised after the agricultural crisis to address farmers’ demands, who have been critical of red tape and certain environmental standards. The political journey leading up to this moment has been tumultuous, with Prime Minister Gabriel Attal announcing over 400 million euros in emergency aid and opening discussions on 67 “commitments” with farmers to emphasize the importance of agriculture.

The bill aims to address key issues facing the agricultural sector in France, such as generational renewal, climate change adaptation, and regulatory simplification. One of the key aspects of the new law is the recognition of agriculture and fishing as being of “major general interest” alongside aquaculture. This designation is intended to guide decisions on agricultural projects and disputes, ensuring that public policies contribute to enhancing food security without burdening farmers.

Another significant aspect of the new law is its focus on attracting new workers to the agricultural sector and adapting production systems to climate change. It includes measures such as creating a new agro bachelor diploma and a national network for agricultural services to support new installations. Additionally, it allows for the formation of agricultural land investment groups to facilitate access to land for new farmers.

The government has also committed to reducing procedural delays in cases of litigation related to irrigation projects and livestock buildings. In cases of environmental damage, it proposes replacing criminal sanctions with administrative penalties

By Riley Johnson

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