Paolo De Castro

Paolo De Castro
Minister of Agriculture
In office
17 May 2006  8 May 2008
Prime Minister Romano Prodi
Preceded by Gianni Alemanno
Succeeded by Luca Zaia
In office
21 October 1998  25 April 2000
Prime Minister Massimo D'Alema
Preceded by Michele Pinto
Succeeded by Alfonso Pecoraro Scanio
Personal details
Born (1958-02-02) 2 February 1958
San Pietro Vernotico, Italy
Political party Democratic Party
Alma mater University of Bologna

Paolo De Castro (born 2 February 1958) is an Italian politician, and former Italian Minister of Agriculture, Food and Forestry Policies. In 2009 he was elected to the European Parliament, and currently serves as chair of the parliament's Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development.

He has also served as professor of Agricultural Economics at the Veterinary Medicine University of Bologna. He is married and has two sons.

Early life and career

Born in San Pietro Vernotico, Apulia, as a son of farmers, De Castro grew up on the family’s 36-hectare farm.[1] In 1980 he graduated at Bologna getting the maximum mark in Agricultural Science.


From January 2001 to May 2004, De Castro chaired the "Nomisma" Economics' Studies Institute. He also chaired the Qualivita Foundation and currently runs the International Agricultural Policy Magazine edited by the Informatore Agrario in Verona. He is professor at the Agriculture Academy of Bologna, the Georgofili Agricultural Economics Academy of Florence, the Agriculture Academy of Pesaro and the National Academy of Treja. From 1996 to 1998 he was economic advisor of Prime Minister Romano Prodi and Economic Advisor of the Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Resources, Michele Pinto. Since 1 June to 31 December 2000 he was appointed as special Advisor of the EU Commission's President. From 21 October 1998 to 25 April 2000 he served as Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Policies in both Governments chaired by Massimo D'Alema. On November 2000, President Carlo Azeglio Ciampi awarded him the "Cavaliere di Gran Croce al merito della Repubblica Italiana"merit honour. He is scientific coordinator of the International Center for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies (CIHEAM) in Paris, and scientific Director of the Genio Rurale Magazine: a magazine on goods evaluation and territory science of Edagricole. He is also member of the Italian Agricultural Economists' Society (SIDEA) and of the European Agricultural Economics Association (EAEA).

Minister of Agriculture, Food and Forestry Policy

Candidate at the Political Elections held from 9 to 10 April 2006 in Apulia in the Olive Tree list, De Castro was elected in the XV Legislature. In May 2006 he was appointed Minister of Agriculture, Food and Forestry Policies in the Government chaired by Romano Prodi.

Member of the European Parliament

De Castro became a Member of the European Parliament following the 2009 European elections. In parliament, he is a member of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats group. Since 2009 he has since been serving on the Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development. Between 2009 and 2014, De Castro acted as the committee’s chairman. In this capacity, he led the parliament’s negotiations in 2013 with the Council of the European Union on the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) budget for 2014-2020.[2] Since 2014, he has been serving as his parliamentary group’s coodinator on the committee.

In addition to his committee assignments, De Castro has been a member of the parliament’s delegation for relations with the United States since 2011. From 2009 until 2011, he was also a member of the delegation for relations with the Palestinian Legislative Council.


  1. Alvise Armellini (January 20, 2010), Agricultural academic European Voice.
  2. Dave Keating (September 25, 2013), Agreement reached on CAP budget European Voice.
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Political offices
Preceded by
Gianni Alemanno
Minister of Agriculture, Food and Forestry Policies
Succeeded by
Luca Zaia
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