Over the past two days the European Economic and Social Committee has been holding a conference to mark the 50th anniversary of EU farming policy. The aim of the conference was not only to celebrate the CAP but also to highlight the future challenges and opportunities facing the EU, regarding this key policy, and to express the expectations of European civil society. Participants from EU institutions, Member State governments and stakeholder organisations have been discussing the CAP’s impact on farmers, consumers, food security and trade. They have also been sharing their hopes and expectations concerning EU agriculture over the next 50 years. In his introductory speech, EESC President Staffan Nilsson, stressed that “after 50 years, the CAP is still very young and constantly changing, and remains the only truly common European policy”. He continued, saying that “we all have the responsibility to build the new CAP for our future and for the future of our children” and emphasised the importance of “supporting innovation, research and development, strengthening the capacities of farmers, increasing investments in agriculture and reducing food wastage at all stages.” Mario Campli, President of the EESC’s Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment (NAT) section, said that a “new pact” is needed between different actors of European farming “to secure the future for agriculture in Europe”. Commissioner Dacian Ciolo?, responsible for agriculture and rural development, took part in the closing session. “The road towards the new Common Agricultural Policy is still ahead of us, its destination being a policy that answers the expectations of all European citizens”, he said. “Civil society’s contribution to this reform process is vital, and the role of the European Economic and Social Committee as a platform mobilising all stakeholders concerned is essential”.