Publication of farm subsidies sparks reaction in Germany

Following the elimination of data protection concerns, figures on the recipients of EU agricultural susidies in 2011 are now publically available. Bund für Umwelt und Naturschutz Deutschland – BUND (Friends of the Earth Germany) says these figures confirm fears that a small number of large businesses often profit excessively from the subsidies, while smaller farms remain disadvantaged.

The majority of farms, namely 62 percent, received a total of 5.75 billion euros, less than 12 percent of the total amount provided. According to Reinhild Benning, agricultural expert at BUND, smaller farms could benefit from a greater link between direct payments and environmental requirements, as their advantage over large companies is clear. German Agriculture Minister Ilse Aigner is currently opposing the so-called “greening” of these payments. BUND also highlighted that during 2011 meat companies were amongst the largest beneficiaries of subsidies.

 More information in German here: