Around the world, not only industrial agriculture, but also high-level climate change mitigation projects are threatening natural resources across territories.

 

Defending the rights of peasants and maintaining healthy ecosystems go hand in hand. Youth are reclaiming the countryside in a wave of re-peasantisation, thus reducing migration to urban areas and abroad.

 

For new entrants to agriculture, it is often difficult to enter into the subsidy system unless they inherit land or rights. Many of these new entrants, mostly young people, are bringing life to rural areas. They provide food for sale directly to their local communities, towns and cities in addition to being committed to the people, environment and climate of their area. Often, these farms are of a very high social and environmental value and they have breathed new life into towns and villages across Europe.

 

Access to land is also difficult for those who wish to work in the agricultural sector. One of the factors causing this situation is the issue concerning decent pensions for those at the age of retirement. The absence of these pensions means that the land is not free and farmers carry on receiving CAP aid, which makes it more difficult for younger generations to establish themselves in this sector.

 

The situation for each new entrant varies widely between EU countries. Many countries do not use all available opportunities to help young people and/or new entrants to agriculture. It is necessary the implementation of financial aid for people wishing to establish themselves in this sector, it is challenging to make newly established farms financially viable in the long term. When a young new entrant sets up his/her farm, it is difficult to earn a decent income during the first years, which often leads to abandonment of the project. To deal with this problem, we should adopt a position that promotes public policies that offer protection and that are not geared towards global agribusiness but rather food sovereignty and making European towns rural again.