Research Handbook on the Politics of EU Law
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Research Handbook on the Politics of EU Law

Edited by Paul James Cardwell and Marie-Pierre Granger

Offering a wealth of thought-provoking insights, this topical Research Handbook analyses the interplay between the law and politics of the EU and examines the role of law and legal actors in European integration.
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Chapter 18: The unintended consequences of the Common Agricultural Policy for local communities

Maria Gaglia Bareli, Miranda Geelhoed, Louisa Parks, Elisa Morgera and Elsa Tsioumani


This chapter discusses the unintended consequences for local communities of major EU-wide policies. It focuses on agriculture-related policies, namely on the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), with a secondary focus on animal welfare and food safety legislation. A case study of the Greek island of Ikaria is used to explore this theme. More specifically, the case study examines the impacts of the implementation of these policies on the livelihoods of traditional goat pastoralists and their relationship with other inhabitants of Ikaria, as well as on the delicate ecosystem of the island. The effects of progressive reforms of the CAP and the introduction of stringent food safety and accompanying animal welfare rules illustrate the ways in which the law and politics of the EU intertwine and translate into unintended consequences such as environmental degradation and the erosion of traditional practices, leading to loss of community cohesion.

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