Potential legal obstacles have emerged that could prevent Denmark’s Mariann Fischer Boel from becoming the European Union’s new agriculture commissioner.

Claims have been made that because she owns a farm, (that is run by her husband), that she is in a conflict of interest with her potential new job.

The argument focuses on the fact that the farm – like most others – receives substantial EU subsidies. This could break EU rules, and the Commission says that its lawyers are investigating the issue.

Meanwhile, incoming Commission president José Durão Barroso says he has complete “confidence” in Fischer Boel, who says has been stressing the fact that her husband runs the family farm and that her personal business affairs had not caused problems in her current post of Denmark’s agriculture minister.