Talk About Future Plans in Spanish

¡Hola! Learn how to talk about future plans in Spanish ! Specifically, learn how to do the following in Spanish:

• talk about your future plans

• talk about preferences

• discuss what you are going to do in your free time

Let's start off with the vocab words in these lessons!

Did you notice that foto and tele both use feminine articles? Foto is short for fotografía and tele is short for televisión . The long form of each word is a feminine noun, making the short form feminine as well!

Note that mismo can be both an adjective and a pronoun .

Indefinite Articles

Remember that articles vary depending on the gender and number of the noun that they accompany.

  • We use unos with masculine plural nouns.
  • We use unas with feminine plural nouns.


In this skill, you learn the following verbs!

Compartir is a regular -ir verb that means to share .

Cuidar is a regular -ar verb that means to take care of .

Practicar is a regular -ar verb that means to practice .

Preferir ( to prefer ) is stem-changing verb . That means that its "stem," prefe , changes to prefie in all forms except for the vos , nosotros/nosotras , and vosotros/vosotras forms.

Quedar is a regular -ar verb that means to meet .

Tomar is a regular -ar verb that means to take or to drink .

Hacer un Viaje

Hacer un viaje is an -er verb phrase with an irregular yo form that means to take a trip .

Here are some of the phrases used in these lessons!

Quiz Yourself!

Want more practice with the vocabulary you learned in these lessons? Click here!

Spanish Conversation

Fantastic! Let's put the grammar and vocab from above to the test in the following example of a conversation in Spanish.

Want to learn more about how to talk about future plans in Spanish? Check out the following articles!

• Informal Future in Spanish

• Simple and Informal Future

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Future Tense in Spanish: The Only Guide You’ll Need

I think you’d all agree with me when I say: learning the future tense in Spanish can be REALLY tough.

And let’s face it, extremely dry grammar content fluffed up with fancy jargon does NOT help you understand how to use it.

I can almost hear the Royal Spanish Grammar Family scoffing form here, lording over their illusive intel and plotting how to take their secrets to the grave.

future plans essay in spanish

Well, my friends, today YOU’RE in luck, because I’ve been spying on the Lordship and I have some exclusive insider info that will dramatically improve the way you learn the future tense in Spanish.

I spend all my time decoding the puzzles so that YOU don’t have to!

Today, we will be uncovering everything you need to know about the Simple Future tense, along with some powerful advice that will help you remember WHEN it’s applicable as well as give you a…

BONUS TIP: when it can be swapped out for something easier!

How to Express the Future in Spanish

What is the “Future” to you?

Here’s the deal- you may have noticed that I didn’t write future “ tense ” , and that’s because before we jump into robotic conjugations, it behooves us English speakers to think about how WE use the future tense in Spanish. You’d be shocked to know how many people learn languages without ever analyzing their own!

When we think of time, we generally see three planes: PAST, PRESENT, and FUTURE. And when we stumble upon a Spanish grammar book for the first time and see 32 tenses, we naturally have an existential crisis and want to pull our hair out.

future plans essay in spanish

But there’s an EASIER way…

LISTEN TO ME . It’s as easy as 1,2, 3.

For us, the future is either one of THREE things:

  • “I am going to do my homework tomorrow” (indicating a prior plan)
  • “I’ll do my homework tomorrow” (rapid decision)
  • “I WILL do my homework tomorrow!!!” (a promise- with cogones !!!)

All subtle differences, which can be imagined through the following scenarios:

  • Your concerned roommates ask… “You’re going out AGAIN ? Don’t you have homework!?” to which you respond that you have a PRIOR PLAN , and that you are going to do your homework with your study group tomorrow!
  • Your concerned roommates see you binge watching Netflix again, and you shoo away their concern with a RAPID DECISION that you’ll just do your homework tomorrow.
  • Your concerned roommates see you struggling to juggle all of your commitments and you consider dropping out and moving to the Amazon, but instead you get your life together and proclaim your PROMISE that you WILL finish your homework tomorrow!

The perception of future differs from culture to culture. Ancient Amerindians believed the future was behind us (because we couldn’t see it) and the past was in front of us. And if you’ve ever heard a German speaking English, you would notice that they do not occupy #1, and exclusively speak in #3- “I will do this… I will go there” (now those are people are efficient!!!).

THE BEST PART is that our Latino and Spanish brethren are procrastinators like us, and we use the future in almost exactly the same way. So the key takeaway is to ALWAYS think in English first which form of the future you would use.

Three Ways to Express the Future in Spanish

  • Voy a hacer mis tareas mañana.  I am going to do my homework tomorrow.
  • Hago mis tareas mañana.  I’ll do my homework tomorrow.
  • Haré mis tareas mañana.  I will do my homework tomorrow.

Again, all subtle differences, but they break down in these three ways:

Let’s attack 1 and 2, our informal buddies, before we take on 3.

The first way is by the far the most used way to express future. It is almost an exact translation of “I am going to do”, or “I’m gonna do”.

NOW, LISTEN UP HERE FOR THE NATIVE SECRET. The second way is the easiest way to express future. It’s the golden ticket!

In English, we slop together the subject “I” with “Will” to make “I’ll”, ultimately to save time.

In Spanish, we save time by just using the PRESENT instead of the FUTURE tense (you don’t even have to conjugate the future, how sweet is that?!) and it sounds way more colloquial and smooth.

Some more examples of expressing future in the present tense are:

  • Nos vemos mañana. See you tomorrow. ( Literally : We see each other tomorrow)
  • No te preocupes, yo lo hago! Don’t worry, I’ll do it!
  • Yo lo contesto! I’ll get it! (The phone)

SIMILARLY, if the future event is CERTAIN, many times the present tense will do just fine:

  • Mi hermana se casa en julio. My sister is getting married in July.
  • Mañana me graduo de la universidad. Tomorrow I am going to graduate from university.

I CANNOT EMPHASIZE ENOUGH how important it is to master #1 and #2. You must learn first how to conjugate the verb “ir” (yo voy, tú vas, él va…). Once you have this down, you just need to remember the infinitive verb (hacer, comer, beber…) and BAM!

You have the future that is most commonly spoken around the world, without ever having to conjugate the Simple Future tense! Look at all this time we are saving!

Additionally, with the powerful TIME SAVER above, if you know how to conjugate the Present, you have already mastered two of the three ways to express future! Felicidades!

Now To the Future… And Beyond!

Easiest Way to Conjugate the Simple Future Tense in Spanish

The Simple Future tense (#3) is used much less than the aforementioned two future forms, but nonetheless we WILL learn it together! (Grammar pun).

It is formed by taking the WHOLE infinitive verb (TO SPEAK = HABLAR) and just smacking the appropriate ending on it! Fácil!

HISTORY BUFFS : In the old days of Shakespearian Spanish, people would say the infinitive verb followed by the conjugated verb HABER. For example, “ Hablar he ”, which literally means “ Speak, I must ” and sounds a whole lot like modern-day “ Hablaré !”

Let’s practice with regular verbs before moving to the gnarly irregular verbs:

Pesky Irregular Verbs that Crash the Party but Come in Handy!

LOOK – Everyone who has every learned a foreign language in the history of the world has bullied irregular verbs for being different. They are like the mysterious, misunderstood kid who wallows in the corner and is difficult to communicate with.

future plans essay in spanish

But once you get him to open up, you have more compassion for him and all of humanity as a result!

We shouldn’t FEAR irregular verbs or make fun of them. Once we master them, the world gets a bit brighter. When we know better, we DO better.

What are the Irregular Verbs in Future Tense Spanish

Often, the most common everyday verbs are irregular, including TO BE (ser/estar), TO DO (hacer), TO SAY (decir) – you know , trivial things! But statistically speaking, the numbers are as follows:

  • VERBS ENDING IN –AR: Less than 5% are irregular.
  • VERBS ENDING IN –ER: Upwards of 72% are irregular.
  • VERBS ENDING IN –AER: 100% irregular (but there are only 18).
  • VERBS ENDING IN –IR: Upwards of 33% are irregular.

There are three categories of verbs that play hard to get and DO NOT FOLLOW the regular Future Tense Conjugation pattern in Spanish:

  • Verbs that drop e from the infinitive (haber, caber, poder, querer, saber…)
  • Verbs that drop the e or i from the infinitive and add d (poner, salir, tener, venir…)
  • Verbs that do whatever they want because they are divas (hacer, decir…)

Let’s go over each one!

1. How to Speak in Future Tense When Verbs Drop E from the Infinitive

The model doesn’t stray far from the regular verb format. Just add the same endings, but drop the e from the infinitive (HABER -> HABR) + ENDING!

WE’RE IN LUCK ! These verbs are some of the most commonly used, so you’ll remember these easily!

2. How to Speak in Future Tense When Verbs Drop E or I and add D

Easy peasy- drop the i e and add the d (PONER PONDR) + ENDING!

3. How to Deal with Diva Verbs that Demand Their Own Way

These verbs are far and few between ( gracias a Dios !) and thus we just need to appreciate them in their uniqueness and memorize their patterns.

So… When Exactly do I use #3 (Simple Future), and Why Does it Matter?

We English speakers know that we use “ I am going to …” (and the less tasteful “ I’m gonna …”) way more than we use “ I will ”. But the reality is there are some uses in Spanish that we DO NOT have in English, where it only makes sense to use the Simple Future tense.

Conjectures ( fancy word for guesses ), Possibilites, and Probabilites

  • ¿Dónde estará mi bolso? Where (in the world) is my purse?
  • ¿Cuántos años tendrá Maluma? I wonder how old Maluma is?
  • ¿Será? You think? (Literally, it will be?)
  • Serán las siete de la noche. It must be seven at night.

Is that… God speaking?

Historically, God gave solemn commands in the future tense.

  • No tomarás el nombre de Dios en vano! You shall not take the Lord’s name in vain!
  • No matarás. You shall not kill.

However, the same goes today for parents disciplining children.

  • No te moverás de este lugar! * You will NOT move from this place!
  • No tendrás tu celular por una semana entera! You will not have your cellphone for a whole week!

*NOTE: The command “No te moverás” differs from the command “No te muevas” in that, generally speaking, the future tense is used when it is more disciplinary and for periods of time that extend longer into the future.

For example, when your mom tells you to stay on a bench while she peruses the whole store “No te moverás de este banco hasta que regrese!”. On the contrary, “No te muevas” would be more for the period of time it takes to snap a picture. “Stay still, don’t move!”

Romance is in the Air

Oh, the romance! We often use the Future in English to indicate when we will ALWAYS be there for someone, physically or emotionally, but the same goes for commitments, jobs or sports teams. Hint: It is almost always accompanied by the world always (siempre).

  • Siempre estaré a tu lado. I will always be by your side.
  • Siempre te amaré. I will always love you. (sounds better in song)
  • Siempre haré lo justo. I will always do what’s right.
  • En buenas y malas, siempre apoyaré a mi equipo. Through the good and bad, I will always support my team. (Hala Madrid!)

future plans essay in spanish

Future Tense Spanish Practice

The best way to learn the future tense in Spanish is with LOTS of practice. Clozemaster is great for this as it allows you to practice conjugating the future tense in context. It offers thousands of future tense Spanish sentences to test your understanding. Try it out with the sentences from this article below!

BOTTOM LINE, People of the Future

Yes, okay, we have learned how to conjugate the regular and irregular verbs of the future, but MOST IMPORTANTLY now we know that the future in Spanish is so much more than just the Simple Future tense ! The future tense in Spanish can also be the verb ir + a + infinitive (aka informal future) and sometimes just the Present tense (aka easy peasy).Easy as 1,2,3!

Moreover, we’ve seen that the future can be used for possibilities, solemn commands and juicy declarations of love. Qué lindo!

Thank you for taking a journey through time and space with us to understand the future of the Spanish language! We hope this page was useful and may always be used as a reference. Hasta el próximo, amigos!

Click here to read our comprehensive guide to all Spanish tenses!

future plans essay in spanish

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How to Form the Future Tense in Spanish: A Straightforward Guide [With Examples]

So you can talk about the present in Spanish , you’ve finally got your head around the past tenses too, so now there’s only one way forward—and it may cause flashbacks from high school Spanish.

The simple future tense in Spanish is formed by taking the infinitive form of the verb and adding one of the following endings to it: -é, -ás, -á, -emos, -éis and -án (which ending you use depends on the subject.) However, that’s not the only way you can express the future!

In this post, you’ll learn everything you need to know about the future tense in Spanish—conjugations, when to use it, irregular verbs and more. Plus, you’ll find different ways to express the future in addition to the above method.

Let’s get started!

How to Form The Future Tense in Spanish: A Quick Overview

How to use the simple future tense in spanish, simple future tense conjugation, irregular verbs in future tense, other uses of the future tense, other ways to form the spanish future tense.

  • Ir + A + Infinitive Future Form

Using Present Tense

Future perfect, useful spanish future vocabulary, how to practice the spanish future tense, and one more thing….

Download: This blog post is available as a convenient and portable PDF that you can take anywhere. Click here to get a copy. (Download)

Here is your quick guide to the key ways of expressing the future tense in Spanish:

If you want to take a look out how these different forms work in a little more detail, just keep reading!

The future tense in Spanish is much like “will” in English. We use it to make predictions about the future, assumptions or guesses about the present and give commands.

For example:

Llover á mañana. (It will rain tomorrow.)

Estar á en la cama. (He’ll be in bed.)

¡Callar ás ! (You will/shall be quiet!)

Most importantly, we also use it to talk about the distant future.  So if you want to talk about next year’s vacation ,  you would say:

El año que viene iremos a Nueva York (Next year we’re going to New York)

When we talk about “the future form” in Spanish, we refer to the future simple tense.

To form the future tense in Spanish, we need to take the infinitive form of the verb and add these endings to it: -é, -ás, -á, -emos, -éis and -án.  Each ending corresponds to a different subject, and are the same whether you’re using an – ar , – er , or – ir verb.

Note that there is an accent on the first letter of every ending, except the “we” form – emos .

Some verbs are irregular and don’t follow exactly the same pattern as above: though they use the same endings as the regular verbs, the stems will change .

Here are some common irregular verbs that are worth learning:

“If” statements. The simple future tense is commonly used in “if” statements. For example:

Si tengo dinero suficiente, iré de compras contigo . — If I have enough money, I will go shopping with you.

Si tú te vas, el dolor me comerá . — If you leave, the pain will consume (lit. eat) me. (This is a line from an Enrique Iglesias song! )

Talking about the past and present. Believe it or not, you can sometimes use the future tense to talk about the past and present! More specifically, it’s used to express possibility and probability about an action that’s occurring right now. For example:

¿Adónde habrá ido Mary?  — Where could Mary have gone/Where has Mary gone?

Ella estará estudiando ahora.  — She is probably studying right now/She will be studying right now.

Reported speech. You’ll frequently hear the Spanish future tense in reported speech—like news clips, news articles, newspapers and more. For example:

Serán las cinco y media cuando llegue el presidente. — It will be 5:30 when the president arrives.

Habrán sido 100 años desde la muerte del guerrero. — It will have been 100 years since the death of the warrior.

Ir  +  A + Infinitive Future Form

Just like in English, we use the phrase “going to” when talking about things we have already planned that are typically in the near future.

Vamos a ir de compras. (We’re going shopping.)

Voy a viajar a Guatemala. (I’m going to travel to Guatemala.)

So how do we make the Spanish equivalent of “going to?”

It takes a simple formula:

Ir  +  a  + infinitive

Here’s an example of the formula in action, using hablar  (to talk) as an example:

As long as you use the  ir  +  a,  you can use this with the infinitive of any verb.

You may not realize it, but we use the present to talk about the future all the time in English. Think about what you would say if I asked what time you were leaving the house tomorrow.

You would likely say “I’m leaving at eight” instead of “I’m going to leave at eight” or “I will leave at eight.”

It’s similar in Spanish, though they tend to use the simple present tense instead of the present continuous tense that we usually use in English. 

Salgo a las ocho. (I’m leaving at eight.)

Use the present tense to talk about the future in Spanish anytime you would in English , usually when someone asks you in the present about something you’re planning to do. 

This is used when you want to talk about something that hasn’t happened yet but will.

For this, you need to use the future indicative form of  haber  plus the past participle .

You can create the past participle of a verb by dropping the – ar, -er  or  -ir ending and adding -ado for ar verbs or -ido for er and ir verbs.

Here is what that would look like using  hablar  as an example:

Here are some examples of the future perfect in use:

Habremos terminado antes de que llegue. (We will have finished before he arrives.)

Habré ido a la universidad. (I will have gone to college.)

Here are some words you should know if you want to talk about future plans:

There are plenty of resources out there to help you practice Spanish grammar, including the future tenses. There are  exercises  on the web as well as  Spanish grammar apps  to help you learn and review. 

But the best way to drill these into your mind is to see how native speakers use them: Maybe you can find a Spanish-language TV series  about time travel, or just find a copy of  The Time Machine  in Spanish. Whatever you do, watch out for how these verbs are conjugated!

You could also use an online immersion program.  FluentU , for example, teaches Spanish through short videos about many different topics (covering the past, present, and yes, future ).

The more resources you use, the more grammar you’ll be exposed to. The future tense comes up in tons of conversations and hearing it used in context will help you remember it better.

There you have it—the full rundown of the future tense in Spanish, from conjugations to irregularities.

We hope that  la próxima vez  (the next time) you want to talk about the futuro  (future), you’ll have no problems at all.

¡Hasta la próxima!  (See you next time!)

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Why Some Companies Grow Amid Uncertainty — and Others Don’t

  • Simon Freakley
  • David Garfield

future plans essay in spanish

A survey of 3,000 global executives suggests that it’s not strategic thinking that sets them apart. It’s their inclination to move quickly.

When you cannot base strategy on reasonably certain premises — or when those reasonable premises are undone by unforeseeable events — what is a company to do? You still have to make plans, allocate capital, and invest for the future. Some argue that agility is the key to thriving in disruptive times, but if all you do is pivot, you are just going around in circles. The annual AlixPartners Disruption Index surveys 3,000 global executives about what is knocking them sideways. Among other things, it shows that three out of five say that it is increasingly challenging to know which disruptive forces to prioritize. Amid all this, there is a group of companies doing very well: about one in five said their companies lead their industry in revenue growth. In this article, the authors dig into that 2024 data to find out what sets these companies apart, and what other companies can learn from them about setting growth strategy in an uncertain world.

Strategic planning plays a key role in helping companies anticipate and manage business cycles. But forces like emerging digital technologies, climate change, and deglobalization — not to mention “black swan” events like the Covid-19 pandemic and wars — have turned a rolling sea into a choppy one, where companies are beset by currents, crosscurrents, riptides, and squalls. This multiplicity of related, unrelated, and inter-related difficulties have one thing in common: They are unpredictable.

  • SF Simon Freakley is the Chief Executive Officer of AlixPartners, a post he has held since 2015. He is based in New York.
  • David Garfield is a Chicago-based partner and managing director of AlixPartners, and the global leader for the firm’s industry practices.

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A farm vehicle spreading straw in a barn full of penned cattle, as pale sun filters through the corrugated skylights.

Angry Farmers Are Reshaping Europe

Farm protests are changing not only Europe’s food system but also its politics, as the far right senses an opportunity.

At Méryl Cruz Mermy and Benoît Merlo’s organic farm in eastern France. Credit...

Supported by

By Roger Cohen

Photographs by Ivor Prickett

Reporting from across rural France

  • March 31, 2024

Gazing out from his 265-acre farm to the silhouetted Jura mountains in the distance, Jean-Michel Sibelle expounded on the intricate secrets of soil, climate and breeding that have made his chickens — blue feet, white feathers, red combs in the colors of France — the royalty of poultry.

The “poulet de Bresse” is no ordinary chicken. It was recognized in 1957 with a designation of origin, similar to that accorded a great Bordeaux. Moving from a diet of meadow bugs and worms to a mash of corn flour and milk in its final sedentary weeks, this revered Gallic bird acquires a unique muscular succulence. “The mash adds a little fat and softens the muscles formed in the fields to make the flesh moist and tender,” Mr. Sibelle explained with evident satisfaction.

But if this farmer seemed passionate about his chickens, he is also drained by harsh realities. Mr. Sibelle, 59, is done. Squeezed by European Union and national environmental regulations, facing rising costs and unregulated competition, he sees no further point in laboring 70 hours a week.

He and his wife, Maria, are about to sell a farm that has been in the family for over a century. None of their three children want to take over; they have joined a steady exodus that has seen the share of the French population engaged in agriculture fall steadily over the past century to about 2 percent.

“We are suffocated by norms to the point we can’t go on,” Mr. Sibelle said.

A farmer in blue overalls, lifting a white-feathered, red-combed chicken by its wings in a dimly lit barn.

Down on the European farm, revolt has stirred. The discontent, leading farmers to quit and demonstrate, threatens to do more than change how Europe produces its food. Angry farmers are blunting climate goals . They are reshaping politics ahead of elections for the European Parliament in June. They are shaking European unity against Russia as the war in Ukraine increases their costs.

“It’s the end of the world versus the end of the month,” Arnaud Rousseau, the head of the FNSEA, France’s largest farmers’ union, said in an interview. “There’s no point talking about farm practices that help save the environment, if farmers cannot make a living. Ecology without an economy makes no sense.”

The turmoil has emboldened a far right that thrives on grievances and rattled a European establishment forced to make concessions. In recent weeks, farmers have blocked highways and descended on the streets of European capitals in a disruptive, if disjointed, outburst against what they call “existential challenges.” In a shed full of the ducks he raises, Jean-Christophe Paquelet said: “Yes, I joined the protests because we are submerged in rules. My ducks’ lives are short but at least they have no worries.”

The challenges farmers cite include E.U. requirements to cut the use of pesticides and fertilizers, now partly dropped in light of the protests. Europe’s decision to open its doors to cheaper Ukrainian grain and poultry in a show of solidarity added to competitive problems in a bloc where labor costs already varied widely. At the same time, the E.U. has in many cases reduced subsidies to farmers, especially if they do not shift to more environmentally friendly methods.

German farmers have attacked Green party events. This month, they spread a manure slick on a highway near Berlin that caused several cars to crash, seriously injuring five people. Spanish farmers have destroyed Moroccan produce grown with cheaper labor. Polish farmers are enraged by what they see as unfair competition from Ukraine.

French farmers, who vented their fury against President Emmanuel Macron during his recent visit to the Paris Agricultural Fair — where politicians regularly pat the backsides of bulls to prove their bona fides — say they can scarcely dig a ditch, trim a hedge, or birth a calf without confronting a maze of regulatory requirements.

Fabrice Monnery, 50, who owns a 430-acre cereal farm, is among them. The cost for his electrified irrigation more than doubled in 2023, and his fertilizer costs tripled, he said, as the war in Ukraine increased energy prices.

“At the start of the war, in 2022, our economy minister said we were going to destroy Russia economically,” he said. “Well, it’s Russia’s war in Ukraine that’s destroying us.”

Farms are mythologized but misunderstood, he said. The soul of France is its “terroir,” the soil whose unique characteristics are learned over centuries by those cultivating it, yet the people living on that hallowed land feel abandoned. The average age of farmers is over 50, and many cannot find a successor.

Often the romanticized image of the French farm — cows being milked at dawn as the mist rises over undulating pasture — is at some distance from reality.

Through Mr. Monnery’s office window, the Bugey nuclear plant could be seen belching steam into the blue sky. Urban development and industrial zones encroach on highly mechanized farms abutting deserted villages where small stores have been crushed by hypermarkets that offer cheaper imported meat and produce.

“The graduates of elite schools that run this country have no idea about farm life, or even what a day’s labor feels like,” Mr. Monnery said. “They’re perched up there, the successors to our royal family, Macron chief among them.”

‘Punitive Ecology’

Ascendant far-right parties across the continent have seized on such anger three months before European Parliament elections. They portray it as another illustration of the confrontation between arrogant elites and the people, urban globalists and rooted farmers.

Their message is that the countryside is the custodian of national traditions under assault from modernity, political correctness and immigration, in addition to a thicket of environmental rules that, in their view, defies common sense. Such messages resonate with voters who feel forgotten.

Marine Le Pen, the leader of France’s anti-immigrant National Rally party, argues that true exile “is not to be banished from your country, but to live in it and no longer recognize it.” Her young lieutenant, the charismatic Jordan Bardella, 28, who is leading the party’s election campaign, speaks of “punitive ecology” as he crisscrosses the countryside.

Mr. Bardella often finds a receptive audience. Vincent Chatellier, an economist at the French National Institute for Agriculture, Food and the Environment, said that close to 18 percent of French farmers live below the official poverty line, and 25 percent are struggling.

For the National Rally, the E.U.’s “Green Deal” and “Farm to Fork Strategy,” which aim to halve chemical pesticide use and cut fertilizer use by 20 percent by 2030 as part of a plan to be carbon neutral by 2050, are a thinly disguised attack on the French economy. In February, under pressure from farmer protests, the E.U. acknowledged how polarizing its efforts have become, scrapping an anti-pesticide bill.

A recent poll by the daily Le Monde gave Ms. Le Pen’s National Rally 31 percent of France’s European election vote, well ahead of Mr. Macron’s Renaissance party with 18 percent. Farmers may not contribute many votes directly but they are popular, even venerated, figures in France, and their discontent registers with a broad spectrum of voters.

In Germany, Stefan Hartung, a member of Die Heimat (Homeland), a neo-Nazi party, addressed a farmers’ protest in January and denounced Brussels and Berlin politicians who exert control over people by “imposing things like climate ideology, gender madness and all that nonsense.” Demonstrations by German farmers had not previously been as violent as the recent ones.

“It’s war between the Greens and farmers,” said Pascal Bruckner, an author and political commentator in France. “You don’t bite the hand that feeds you.”

Cyrielle Chatelain, a French lawmaker who represents the mountainous Isère region and leads a group of environmentalist parties in Parliament, said that it was wrong to say that “all farmers are angry with the Greens.”

“It’s less the idea of a green transition that angers them,” she said in an interview, “than the way it’s applied.”

The Green Deal stipulates, for example, that hedges, home to nesting birds, cannot be cut between March 15 and the end of August. But in Isère, Ms. Chatelain said, no bird would nest in a hedge on March 15 because the hedge is still frozen.

Thierry Thenoz, 63, a pig farmer in Lescheroux in southeastern France, told me he had replanted miles of hedges on his 700-acre farm. “But if I want to cut a 25-foot break in the hedge for a gate and a track, I have to negotiate with regulators.”

Mr. Thenoz, who invested long ago in a methane unit to recycle pig manure as fertilizer to make his farm self-sustaining, has also decided to retire and sell his shares in the farm. His three children, he said, were just not interested.

A Cornerstone Wobbles

The cornerstone of a uniting Europe for more than six decades has been its Common Agricultural Policy, known as the C.A.P. As in the United States, where the government spends billions annually on farm subsidies, mostly for much larger farms than in western Europe, a viable agricultural sector is seen as a core strategic interest.

The European policy has kept food abundant, set certain prices, and helped ensure that France and the European Union have a large trade surplus in agricultural and food products, even as it has come under scrutiny for corruption and favoring the rich. Big farms benefit most.

French farmers who have led the protests of recent months over what they see as unfair competition from less regulated countries have themselves benefited enormously from E.U. subsidies and open global markets.

France has received more in annual financial support from Brussels for its farmers than any other country, more than $10 billion in 2022, said Mr. Chatellier, the economist. The French agriculture-and-food sector had a $3.8 billion surplus with China in 2022, and an even larger one with the United States.

But Europe’s agricultural policy is riddled with problems that have contributed to the farm uprising. An expanding E.U. introduced greater internal competition. Cheap chickens bred with much lower labor costs in Poland have flooded the French market. Such problems abound in a bloc that now has 27 members.

Tariff-free imports from Ukraine — where labor is even cheaper — have given a sobering sense of what eventual Ukrainian membership in the E.U. would mean. (This month, the E.U. imposed restrictions on some imports from Ukraine, including chicken and sugar.)

The C.A.P. has created an “unhealthy dependency,” Mr. Chatellier said. Farmers rely on politicians and officials, not consumers, for a substantial part of their revenue, and they feel vulnerable. Mr. Monnery said he received about $38,000 last year in E.U. aid, a sum that has declined steadily in recent years.

Increasingly, the money is tied to a raft of rules to benefit the environment. A new E.U. requirement that farmers leave 4 percent of land uncultivated to help “re-green” the continent provoked special fury — and has been put on hold for a year.

Governments are scrambling to contain the damage. Besides deferring some environmental rules, France has canceled a tax increase on diesel fuel for farm vehicles. It has turned against free trade, moving to block an agreement with Mercosur, a South American bloc accused by farmers of unfair competition.

The question is how much of a toll such concessions will take on the environment and whether these are cosmetic changes to what is widely seen as a dysfunctional, outdated European agricultural system.

Tough Road Ahead

Méryl Cruz Mermy and her husband, Benoît Merlo, who graduated in agricultural engineering from a prestigious Lyon school, have moved in the opposite direction from most young people.

Over the past five years, they built a 700-acre organic farm in eastern France where they grow wheat, rye, lentils, flax, sunflowers and other crops, as well as raising cattle. They went into debt as they bought and rented land.

If their path is to lead to the future of farming, it must be made easier, they said.

Mr. Merlo, 35, sees a “crisis of civilization” in the countryside, where automation means fewer workers, the work is too arduous to attract most young people, and credit for investment is hard to obtain. He joined one protest out of extreme frustration. “We don’t count the hours we work, and that work is not respected at its just value,” he said.

They are committed environmentalists, but a crisis in the organic food sector, known as “bio” in France, has added to their difficulties. Bio boomed for some years, but hard-pressed consumers now balk at the higher prices. Several big supermarkets have dropped organic food.

“New norms for a greener planet are necessary,” Ms. Cruz Mermy, 36, said, “but so are fair prices and competition.”

I asked if they might give up the farm life. “We have two children aged 3 and 7, so we have to be optimistic,” she said. “We want this farm to be an anchor for them. You look at the future — climate change, war, limited energy — and it feels ominous, but we go step by step.”

Over a century, that is what the family of Jean-Michel and Maria Sibelle did, breeding legendary poultry. Now, with a sense of resignation, they have come to the end of that road.

“I don’t have the physical force I once had,” Mr. Sibelle said. “That, too, is nature.”

“You know, I always wanted to be a farmer and had the good fortune to do that,” he added. “I would not have gone to a factory to work a 35-hour week even if I worked double that with my chicken and capons.”

He took me into his “prize room,” a shed filled with silver cups and trophies, Sèvres porcelain sent by presidents, framed accolades and other tributes to the greatness of his blue-white-and-red Bresse chickens, symbols of a certain France that endures, but only just.

Erika Solomon contributed reporting from Berlin.

Roger Cohen is the Paris Bureau chief for The Times, covering France and beyond. He has reported on wars in Lebanon, Bosnia and Ukraine, and between Israel and Gaza, in more than four decades as a journalist. At The Times, he has been a correspondent, foreign editor and columnist. More about Roger Cohen

Ivor Prickett is a photographer based in Istanbul. He covered the rise and fall of ISIS in Iraq and Syria while on assignment for The Times. More recently he has been working on stories related to the war in Ukraine. More about Ivor Prickett



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