Committee of Professional Agricultural Organisations in the EU - General Confederation of Agricultural Cooperatives in the EU

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The Committee of Professional Agricultural Organisations in the EU - General Confederation of Agricultural Cooperatives in the EU (COPA-COGECA) is a EU wide food and agriculture confederated trade association.

In 1958, the first European representative organisation for farmers, COPA,(Committee of Professional Agricultural Organisations) was established. The following year the European Community created a European umbrella organisation, to represent agricultural interests, COGECA, (General Confederation for Agricultural Co-operation). The organisations merged in 1962 and today the organisation can boast members from 53 organisations within the 25 European Union member states and 5 associated organisations from Bulgaria and Romania and 7 partner organisations from Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Turkey. According to their website COPA aims to: "represent both the general and specific interests of farmers in the Member States and, since its inception, it has been recognised by the Community authorities as the spokesman for the agricultural sector as a whole." [1]

COPA's Objectives

  • To examine any matters related to the development of the Common Agricultural Policy;
  • To represent the interests of the agricultural sector as a whole;
  • To seek solutions which are of common interest, and
  • To maintain and develop relations with the Community authorities and with any other representative organisations or social partners established at European level.[2]

COGECA's Objectives

COGECA represents the food industry, agricultural co-operatives in the EU. Their website states the importance of their collective business interests:

  • About 30 000 co-operative enterprises
  • Almost 9 million members
  • Over 600 000 persons employed
  • About 210 billion EURO turnover
  • Over 50% of shares in the supply of agricultural inputs
  • Over 60% of shares in the collection, processing and marketing of agricultural products [3]

COGECA as a lobby

COGECA represents a powerful European Lobby with access to the highest levels of the European policy process including European Commission, Council of Ministers, European Parliament, Economic and Social Committee, Committee of the Regions. The group claim to take part in consultations for all European policies. COGECA and COPA work together to lobby European policy makers in over 50 (mainly joint) working groups which consists of around 300 meetings each year[4]. The group have been active in various consultations regarding alcohol policy within the EU.

Affiliations & Memberships


  1. ^ COPA-COGECA Website The dynamic face of European farmers Last Accesed 2nd July 2007
  2. ^ ibid (a).
  3. ^ COPA-COGECA Website COGECA Objectives Last Accessed 2nd July 2007
  4. ^ ibid (b).