Before EU farm policy reform, excess produce was bought up with public money and stored. Some was passed on to poor families, the elderly and asylum seekers… With those stocks practically gone, EU Agriculture Commissioner Mariann Fischer Boel has recommended raising spending on the EU’s food aid scheme.
Boel said: “Member States that want to take part on this programme can request food aid based on a three-year programme. Of course, where it is possible, the food will come from intervention stocks. But mostly, it will be bought on the market through public calls for tender.”
Under these programmes in cooperation with charities and social services, EU states would choose the food they find the most appropriate, and, starting in 2010, for three years, have at least three quarters of the cost paid by Brussels. From 2013, it will be 50-50.
Communal spending on this was 310 million euros in 2008 and would be 500 million euros next year, if approved.