The new Council Regulation (EC) No 1698/2005 on support for rural development by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development ( EAFRD ) offers opportunities for the development of rural areas in accordance with the strategy of the EU, especially within the context of the implementation of the new Common Agriculture Policy ( CAP ).
Under this Regulation, rural development policy for 2007 to 2013 is focused on three themes (known as “thematic axes”) which are:
- improving the competitiveness of the agricultural and forestry sector;
- improving the environment and the countryside;
- improving the quality of life in rural areas and encouraging diversification of the rural economy.
The Community priority 2 “improving the environment and countryside” within the context of agricultural environment measures explicitly allows for support measures for the conservation of genetic resources in agriculture.
Support measures for endangered farm animal breeds are therefore also implemented in Germany according to EARFD. The measures are either financed solely by the Bundeslaender or – subsequent to the successful notification by EU – also as mutual support measure from the Federal Geovernment and the Bundeslaender together based on the „Joint Task for the Improvement of Agricultural Structures and Coastal Protection“. In future, the latter can be co-financed with EU funds.
Within the programmes, premiums are granted for:
- animal keeping
- purchase of animals
- support of breeders’ associations
- the collection of semen and embryos for use and long-term conservation.
Furthermore, the Federal Office for Agriculture and Food ( BLE ) governs the following special support measures for the biological diversity of agriculture, forestry, fishery and food (including horticulture):
- Pilot and demonstration projects are aimed to remedy deficiencies and solve problems regarding the conservation and sustainable use of genetic resources in Germany. The projects develop and implement innovative concepts with model character.
- Furthermore, projects for the utilisation of the potential of genetic resources and for the conservation of biodiversity through a sustainable use of genetic resources can be supported by the Federal Scheme for Organic Farming and Other Kinds of Sustainable Agriculture.