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S&D and EPP group discussed “European Agriculture and New Global Challenges”

Jul 14th, 2010 |

Brussels, 14 July 2010. Yesterday, the S&D group and the EPP group convened at the European Parliament in Brussels to discuss “European Agriculture and New Global Challenges”.

Mr. Romano Prodi, Chairman of the UN-AU Panel for Peacekeeping in Africa and former President of the European Union, Mr. Martin Schulz, President of the S&D Group and Mr. Joseph Daul, President of the EPP Group, stressed the fact that the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) has many global challenges to face and that the role of the European Union is crucial in this process. The CAP needs to address first of all food security because the demand is increasing two times faster than the production. Secondly, CAP should focus on environmental sustainability in order to reach resource efficiency, to conserve biodiversity and to face climate change. In a third step, CAP needs to promote economic and social sustainability, for both the consumers and the producers.

Mr. Franz Fischler, President of the Eco-Social Forum Europe, and Former Commissioner of Agriculture, urged a European answer to these challenges and he proposed to adopt a new motto “Value for Money”. According to Mr. Fischler, value means to have safe and high quality food. The production of this value costs. Therefore, the value should have a fair price.

MEP Paolo De Castro presented his book “European Agriculture, and New Global Challenges”. He outlined the major role and responsibility of Europe in designing future agricultural policies, being the world leader in agro-food production. “Food, water and energy run the risk of becoming increasingly scarce resources as consumption pressure grows together with the world’s population and wealth”, said Mr. De Castro, underling that in the fundamental phase of the food chain, agriculture plays a decisive role in responding to the growth in food demand. As the chief user of water resources, agriculture affects both water availability and quality: as manager of over 35% of the land surface it plays a fundamental role in conserving and regenerating natural resources and in combating climate change.

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