What are the realities of the Biodiversity and Farm to Fork strategies?
According to Frans Timmermans, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission: “At the heart of the Green Deal the Biodiversity and Farm to Fork strategies point to a new and better balance of nature, food systems and biodiversity; to protect our people’s health and well-being, and at the same time to increase the EU’s competitiveness and resilience. These strategies are a crucial part of the great transition we are embarking upon.”
When the strategies were launched in May 2020, many stakeholders welcomed strategic thinking on the future of agriculture and food systems for the EU. The objective, to further environmental protection and to fight climate change, whilst furthering the economic situation of farmers and assuring food security, is clear.
However, the two strategies prompted a number of questions about the overall coherence of what was proposed. For example, reductions on pesticides and fertilizers, and a forced decrease of agriculture land, were proposed, without providing an impact assessment.
Policymakers have been challenged to demonstrate that their proposals will not create an added burden for farmers nor result in a decrease of EU agricultural production. Critics claim that this would be at odds with the objective of increasing European food security and enhancing growth in the EU’s rural areas.
Furthermore, they claim that the combined two proposed strategies, if implemented as such, could result in a reduction of 15% EU agricultural production and a decline of EU food security.
Join this EURACTIV Virtual Conference to examine the practical implications of the Biodiversity and Farm to Fork strategies. Questions to be discussed include:
- Can a high level of environmental protection be combined with an equally high level of economic development and growth? Are trade-offs inevitable here?
- Will EU farmers face an uneven playing field, being obliged to adhere to stricter environmental conditions than their competitors?
- Is the relationship between the Farm to Fork Strategy and the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and its reform coherent?
Tassos Haniotis, Director, Strategy, Simplification and Policy Analysis, DG AGRI, European Commission
Franc Bogovic MEP, European Parliament
Carla Boonstra, Head of Unit, Department of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality, Dutch Permanent Representation to the EU
Pekka Pesonen, Secretary General, Copa-Cogeca
Bérénice Dupeux, Senior Policy Officer for
Agriculture, European Environmental Bureau
Andreas Huber, Integrated Field Sciences Leader, Europe, Corteva Agriscience
Dave Keating, Journalist, EURACTIV
09:30 - 09:35 Welcome
09:35 - 09:55 Panellists statements
09:55 - 10:55 Discussion and Q&A
10:55 - 11:00 Closing statements
+32 (0)2 788 36 86