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Common Agricultural Policy: Organic Farming Can Deliver Best Solutions to Meet Public Demands

On July 19, 2010, the European Commission opened a two-day conference to debate the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and to discuss the results of the related public consultation. These results clearly show that the public gives high priority to sustainable resource use, supply of healthy food, and the maintenance of diverse farming systems throughout the EU. System approaches, such as organic farming, show great potential to meet these demands according to a recent press release of the IFOAM EU Group.

“We have to prioritise sustainable food and farming systems that deliver public goods such as diverse landscapes and the maintenance of ecosystem services such as fertile soils and clean water while ensuring a fair income for farmers,” underlines Prof. Urs Niggli, Director of the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture FiBL, speaker at the Commission conference. “Single measures are not an answer to the complex demands of society and the future challenges we are facing. Therefore, we call on Commissioner Ciolos to invest in system approaches such as organic farming that deliver on several areas of sustainability. Organic farming performs well on climate change mitigation and adaptation, biodiversity, the delivery of clean water and stable soil, while producing high-quality food and should therefore be prioritised in all CAP measures.“

“On the occasion of the CAP conference and the official launch by the Commission of the new European organic logo by Commissioner Ciolos, we welcome the Commission’s commitment towards organic food and farming and thus hope and expect that organic systems will be given priority in the future CAP,” comments Christopher Stopes, President of the EU Group of the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM EU Group). “The only fair deal is to spend taxpayer’s money through the CAP in a way that best serves the public interest whilst ensuring sustainable land use and socio-economic stability. The CAP needs to be seriously re-shaped to meet these demands and a well-regulated organic food system is an excellent working model!” 

Source: Citizens want a CAP that targets sustainability. Organic farming can deliver best solutions to meet public demands. Press release of the IFOAM EU Group of July 19, 2010

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