The horticulture sector received almost HUF 200 billion in support

By: STA Date: 2023. 12. 07. 11:00

The government has supported nearly seven thousand horticultural investments with around HUF 185 billion in recent years, which, in addition to helping farmers, has created a huge opportunity to reduce imports and reduce the negative effects of climate change – stated Zsolt Feldman at the year-end professional conference of the Hungarian Fruit and Vegetable Association (FruitVeb).

(Photo: AM/Csaba Pelsőczy)

In his presentation on the experiences of the implementation of the Common Agricultural Policy in 2023 and the development and investment subsidies expected from 2024, the Secretary of State responsible for agriculture and rural development of the Ministry of Agriculture spoke about the start of the Agricultural Ecology Program and the redistributive support as one of the significant changes in the conditions and structure of the Common Agricultural Policy. As he said, these two new support schemes represent 30 percent of direct support resources. That’s why it doesn’t matter how these amounts are used in the sector.

According to Zsolt Feldman, within the EU, the Hungarian Agro-ecology Program is most similar to the previous greening subsidy

Therefore, it is no coincidence that farmers have declared 80 percent of our agricultural land in this program. Within this, 94 thousand hectares are vineyards and fruit plantations. As the state secretary explained: according to the previous rule, if the farmers participating in the AÖP cannot fulfill their commitments, they will lose the full support. During the negotiations in Brussels, it was possible to reach a system of sanctions, according to which, in case of partial fulfillment, farmers can get at least 30-50 percent of the support. Zsolt Feldman drew the attention of those present regarding the Territorial Monitoring System to the fact that it must be applied due to EU regulations, that some of its elements must be gradually introduced based on the rules and that it will be mandatory to apply them in the following years. Thus, the most efficient operation and use of the system will be of great importance in this area as well.

Among the lessons learned from the first year of the new CAP, the state secretary mentioned that it is no longer possible to comply with the support conditions or the changing market environment out of habit

In addition to the need to adapt to changes, he called the Hungarian regulation the most producer-friendly, emphasizing that many changes are useful, citing as an example the regulations related to soil protection. In the fruit and vegetable sector, we work with 50 Producer Sales Organizations (TÉSZ), said Zsolt Feldman. The value of the goods they sell is about HUF 90 billion. The government provides support for the operation of the TÉSZs, the amount of which increases every year, until mid-October of this year they reached nearly six billion forints. From 2022 to 2024, under the title of agri-environmental support, grape and fruit plantations covering approximately 65,000 hectares will receive HUF 70 billion in support. Through the Rural Development Program, the sector received significant resources for technological development: HUF 185 billion was awarded to nearly seven thousand subsidized applications for the purchase of machinery, the modernization and renewal of horticulture, the establishment of glass and foil houses, the establishment of plantations, the creation of mushroom houses, cold storages, and the establishment of wine grape plantations.


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