The EU sugar industry matters. Beet sugar production provides high-quality, remunerative jobs in some of the EU’s most vulnerable rural areas, reflecting a labour productivity that reached over 150,000 euros per employee in 2017, compared to 57,000 euros in the wider food and beverages industry. Although small in direct employment terms, EU sugar production generates significant employment and gross value-added multipliers. In 2017 the industry supported almost 300,000 direct and indirect jobs, and contributed 15.6 billion euros to the EU’s GDP1. Ensuring the continued competitiveness and sustainability of our industry is vital to the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of European citizens and some of our most fragile communities.
Over the past five years, CEFS has engaged in several policy debates: dialoguing actively with the European institutions on the sugar market situation; contributing to a more balanced approach to trade negotiations; balancing the Emissions Trading System to maintain competitiveness while achieving policy targets; promoting workable and sustainable phytosanitary and technical regulation; and striving for science-based policymaking when it comes to obesity, non-communicable diseases, and food and feed labelling and safety legislation.
This brochure shines the spotlight on three themes that will define the competitive evolution of the sector over the next five years: the current competitive framework; the policy initiatives necessary to future-proof the sector; and how to rebalance the debate around sugar and health.