Study on environmental consequences of Sheep and Goat farming and of the Sheep and Goat premium system

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Publication Date 2006
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This study was undertaken for DG AGRI of the European Commission to examine the environmental effects of sheep and goat (hereafter S&G) farming and of the EU premium system for supporting S&G farming (Council Regulation 2529/2001). It focuses on the six main S&G producing countries of the EU (France, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom), from 1999 to 2005.

During this period the mid-term review of the CAP (Council Regulation 1782/2003) introduced the option of decoupling sheep and goat support payments, one objective of which was to promote more environmentally sustainable agriculture. This mechanism, along with other policy measures that affect S&G farming (such as Less Favoured Area and Agri-environmental payments) are also considered, resulting in an ex-ante analysis which tries to anticipate the consequences of the new set of interacting rules that will affect the S&G sector in the future.

The study also reviews the implementation of the S&G identification and registration system introduced in 2005 (Council Regulation 21/2004) and its implications for the environment, for example as a cross compliance measure that might replace the monitoring of sheep numbers where support is no longer paid on a headage basis (i.e. where it is fully decoupled).

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