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Talking Europe

The cost and cause of Réunion island's sugar addiction

A volcanic outcrop in the Indian ocean, some 200 kilometres west of Mauritius and two hours from the Seychelles, the French overseas territory of Réunion island has as a tropical climate where exotic fruits and sugarcane can thrive. With a mountainous volcanic terrain that is often hit by hurricanes, however, farming isn't always easy here.


As one of the EU's outermost regions, Réunion get additional support from Brussels to compensate for the constraints of being offshore. In the area of agriculture, specific CAP funds are allocated to boost local production and subsidising expensive essential imports. In this Talking Europe agriculture special, we take a look at how those funds are used, as well as the island’s addiction to sugarcane which today accounts for 57 percent of its agricultural land.

Presented by Eve Irvine.

Produced by Isabelle Romero and Anaïs Guérard.

Co-financed by the European Commission. This reflects the views only of the author, and the commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained.

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