• POLITICS IS a murky game and that is as true in Europe as it is anywhere else.

  • IT IS not down to a single event - but it is difficult to escape the conclusion that cash could be scarce this winter on many farms.

  • WHEN THE European Commission was reforming the CAP it promised a less bureaucratic and more flexible policy.

  • POLITICIANS ARE often judged by how they respond in a crisis - and as he battles to secure a second term as farm commissioner, Dacian Ciolos has been handed a huge economic and political crisis, in the shape of the Russian ban on food imports.

  • FIFTY OR even 20 years ago things in agriculture were a lot more simple.

  • THERE IS some truth in the old adage that what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

  • FOR AN industry reliant on long term decision making, 10 years is not a long time.

  • IN AN era of UK devolution, the minister at Defra is less important than when all policy was set by London.

  • When it comes to agricultural products every boom has in it the seeds of a slump.

  • The Boulevard of Broken Dreams is a famous poster of disillusioned movie stars in a late night Hollywood diner - and for many that must be how the first session of the new European parliament this week in Strasbourg felt.