Golden Gate University Law Review


Jim Dixon


Many rural communities in Europe are distinctively dependent on farming. Also, the very close association between Europe's environmental assets - soil, water, forests, biodiversity - and farming make a strong case for integrating environmental objectives in farm policy. However, the European model too often assumes that Europe's farming is static and that market protection (in the form of export subsidies, tariffs and subsidies) will automatically deliver the additional functions of the European model. This article will seek to critique this assumption. It is argued that the European Model is justifiable as a descriptor of part of the EU countryside but that existing policy instruments are mis-matched to delivering these objectives. Instead, subsidies are used to ensure EU farmers have a place in global food markets. These neither work in the interests of ensuring the continuation of the European model, nor are they sustainable within international trade discussions.