Farm To Fork - Can it lead to a 'gold-standard food system' in Europe, focused on SDGs?
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The Farm to Fork Strategy is at the heart of the European Green Deal, aiming to make food systems fair, healthy and environmentally-friendly.
Food systems cannot be resilient to crises such as the Covid-19 pandemic if they are not sustainable. Some civil society stakeholders are calling for a redesign of our food systems which account for nearly one-third of global GHG emissions. They claim the current systems consume large amounts of natural resources, result in biodiversity loss and negative health impacts, and do not allow fair economic returns and livelihoods for all actors, in particular for primary producers.
The Farm to Fork strategy is central to the Commission’s agenda to achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The strategy is designed to help the EU make progress towards its climate and energy targets (SDG 7 and SDG 13), and improve the viability and sustainability of its agriculture sector (SDG 2) and the health of the EU population (SDG 3). It will also contribute to the EU’s efforts to sustainably manage forests and halt deforestation, combat desertification, restore degraded land and soil, halt biodiversity loss, protect threatened species (SDG 15), and protect and ensure the sustainable use of oceans (SDG 14).
The aim of the Farm to Fork strategy is to make the EU food system a global standard for sustainability. But the transition to sustainable food systems will require a collective approach involving public authorities at all levels of governance, private sector actors across the food value chain, non-governmental organisations, social partners, academics and citizens.
Join this EURACTIV Virtual Conference to discuss how a sustainable EU food system will be essential to achieve the SDGs. Questions to be discussed include:
- How can the EU reduce the environmental and climate footprint of its food system, strengthen its resilience, and prevent mismanagement of resources?
- What is the best way to support EU farmers sustainably and address the decline of the farmer population in Europe?
- What would constitute a 'gold-standard food system' and how quickly could the EU establish one? And how could this help other countries to achieve food systems that address SDGs?
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Diego Canga Fano, Principal Adviser, DG AGRI, European Commission
Petros Kokkalis, MEP, Member of ENVI, Substitute of AGRI, Member of the European Food Forum
Arnold Puech d'Alissac, Vice-President of the Employers' Group, Member of the Section for Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment, EESC
Mary Kenny, Food Safety and Consumer Protection Officer, FAO
Timothy Cullinan, First Vice-President of COPA and President of the Irish Farmers’ Association
Dave Keating, Journalist, EURACTIV
09:30 – 09:35 Welcome
09:35 – 09:50 Opening statements
09:50 – 10:40 Discussion and Q&A
10:40 – 10:45 Closing statements
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The discussion about pushing forward the green agenda globally should put less emphasis on the unfair competition for farmers that may arise as a consequence, a Commission official said recently, but the claim was quickly refuted by the farming community.