Agricultural policy remains at the centre of the policy making activities of the European Union, yet there is a paradoxical sense in which it is regarded as peripheral to understanding the Union’s future development. Keeler observes (1996, p. 128) that ‘less than 2.3 percent of the more than 400 articles in … The Journal of Common Market Studies from September 1966 through September 1992 focused on the CAP. Most of these articles and other publications on the CAP have dealt far more with its economic or technical dimensions than with its political dynamics’. Yet a Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) has been one of the cornerstones of the European Union (EU) since its inception as a common market; it continues to account for around half of the EU’s budget; it is the policy which has the greatest impact at the level of individual economic actors; and it presents one of the most significant obstacles to eastern enlargement of the Union.
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.