The initial document from the European Commission on its signature proposal is more sensible and sympathetic than many expected. At last, there is an explicit acknowledgement of the importance of food security and how farmers’ incomes have fallen behind other sectors of the population.

Nobody can argue with the central aims of reducing dependence on pesticides and antibiotics, as well as reducing excessive fertiliser use – all in the context of taking action to increasing the health of the general population and reducing agriculture’s contribution to greenhouse gas emissions, climate change and environmental degradation.