The story of Community preference for food security

Häberli, Christian (2015). The story of Community preference for food security. In: McMahon, Joseph A.; Cardwell, Michael N. (eds.) Research Handbook on EU Agriculture Law. RESEARCH HANDBOOKS IN EUROPEAN LAW (pp. 437-462). Cheltenham, UK, and Northampton, MA, USA: Edward Elgar 10.4337/9781781954621

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"Préférence communautaire" is an in-built notion of the CAP since its inception with the Treaty of Rome (1957). Its’ simple objective laid down at the Stresa Conference in 1958 is to prefer community produce over imports wherever possible, while at the same time promoting agricultural exports and FDI (“vocation exportatrice de l’Europe”). Does this contrast or correlate with the notion of “food sovereignty” which originated in 1996 as a notion of small farmer self-sufficiency (Via Campesina), and which now has found its way into the official EC discourse? Recent CAP reforms indeed seem to continue banking on border protection and on the occasional export subsidy. Nonetheless, coming together with claims to mitigate climate change, “food sovereignty” à la CAP fails to acknowledge efficiency losses at home and negative spillover effects on the right to food of food exporting developing countries. This chapter asks whether new non-tariff and domestic support measures are just new wine in the old cask of fortress Europe, together with the FDI promotion instruments of the FED and others. Might the increasing dynamics and new challenges of agricultural trade and investment lead to lower market and production shares for European farms? It concludes that in the medium term the WTO Green Box has the only legal and effective tools to promote EU agriculture and food.

Item Type:

Book Section (Book Chapter)


02 Faculty of Law > Department of Economic Law > World Trade Institute
10 Strategic Research Centers > World Trade Institute

02 Faculty of Law > Department of Economic Law > NCCR International Trade Regulation

UniBE Contributor:

Häberli, Christian Martin


300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 340 Law
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 380 Commerce, communications & transportation


978 1 78195 461 4




Edward Elgar


[4] Swiss National Science Foundation


[UNSPECIFIED] NCCR Trade Regulation




Christian Häberli

Date Deposited:

02 Dec 2015 11:57

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 14:50

Publisher DOI:



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