Keywords: Groups; Agricultural policy; European Union; Policy change; Corporatism.
The article is about the transformations of Italian farm unions in the last 20 years. Unlike most accounts of the same phenomenon, it is argued that national factors are not sufficient to explain such transformations. It is essential to look at policy changes occurred at European level. The article focuses on the reforms of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) since 1992 and interprets from this angle the changes detected at national level. It concludes that, whereas certain developments are indeed entirely domestic, most transformations stem from changes in the CAP. Examples of these developments include the increased attention farm unions pay to consumer and environmental issues as well as the important additional functions acquired over time (mainly due to CAP implementation).