Spain to benefit from EU food handouts

The EU has approved €500 million in 2013 for the distribution of free food within the EU, with an estimated 18 million people in 19 countries expected to benefit from the programme. Spain, with €85.6 million, is the second highest beneficiary of the scheme.

The money to finance this scheme is covered by funds from the Common Agricultural Policy. However, this is the last year that the scheme will exist under the current framework as countries such as Germany are objecting to agricultural funds being used for social purposes.

The scheme was started as a means of using up the vast amounts of foodstuffs – the proverbial mountains and lakes – withdrawn from the market in the EU in attempts to increase or manipulate prices.

The beneficiaries are Italy (98.2 million), Spain (85.6 million), Poland (76.9 million), France (71.3 million), Romania (55.8 million), Greece (22 million), Portugal (19.5 million), Bulgaria (19 million), Hungary (13.9), Belgium (12 million), Lithuania (7.8 million), Latvia (5.2 million), Finland (3.7 million), Ireland (2.6 million), Slovenia (2.6 million), Estonia (2.4 million), Malta (548 475 euros), Czech Republic (183,869 euros) and Luxembourg (171 704 euros).

The scheme is ostensibly designed to provide food for the less privileged in society.

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