Brussels, 20.05.2020. The Biodynamic Federation – Demeter International welcomes the publication of the Farm to Fork and Biodiversity strategies within the framework of the European Green Deal. It is high time for an agricultural turnaround: farming must protect the environment, preserve biodiversity, enhance animal welfare and offer economic prospects for farmers and rural areas.
The Biodynamic Federation – Demeter International has been advocating for a radical change in the agricultural system for a long time but so far, the different EU policies failed to address the current challenges. Therefore, both publications can only be welcomed by the farming sector as they finally set the standards for a real transition.
“It is high time for an agricultural turnaround that puts humans, nature and animals at the very center” reminds Christoph Simpfendörfer, General Secretary of the Biodynamic Federation – Demeter international. The current Covid-19 crisis only reinforces the importance to build healthy, equitable, environmentally friendly and resistant food systems. It also brings forward the need to return to regional economic circles, relying on local and seasonal products is not only profitable for the environment but also for local economies.
EU politics need to support farmers in this transition which is why the Farm to Fork Strategy must set out a clear vision for the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). “The CAP must promote farming that protects the environment, preserves and promotes biodiversity and animal welfare, it must offer economic prospects for farms and rural communities”, says Clara Behr, Head of Policy and Public relations for the Biodynamic Federation – Demeter International. This effort supposes to use fewer chemical pesticides and fertilizers, to increase organic farming as it has proven to be a sustainable agri-food production system, and to foster agroecological practices.
The simultaneous publication of the two strategies shows that biodiversity and agriculture are intrinsically linked but a mutual benefit is only possible with another food production system. In organic farming, for instance, there are on average one third more species and twice as many individuals than on conventionally farmed land thanks to the dispense of herbicides and chemical synthetic pesticides.
For the Biodynamic Federation – Demeter International, organic farming and agroecological practices play an important role in this agricultural turnaround by fostering its sustainability and resilience. Both strategies must be ambitious in this regard and fit for purpose to address the environmental challenges that threatens the farming sector worldwide.
Press contact: Clara Behr, Head of Policy and Public relations
Biodynamic Federation – Demeter International is the only organic association that has built up a network of individual certification for biodynamic farming worldwide. Its basis is the Biodynamic agriculture method, originated by Rudolf Steiner in his “Agriculture Course” given in Koberwitz in 1924, and developed further in practice and research. The Biodynamic Federation – Demeter International is an umbrella organisation with 46 member organisations in 37 different countries across the world.