|January 9, 2004,
European Commission: On January 22, 2004 the
European Commission will hold a 'European Hearing on Organic
Food and Farming towards a European Action Plan' in Brussels.
The main purpose of this hearing is to listen to the views
of the widest possible range of stakeholders, including
experts in the agricultural, environmental and consumer
field and to gather experiences from pilot initiatives.
Following this public hearing, the Commission will prepare
an Action Plan in the form of a Communication to the European
Council and Parliament, including a list of possible actions
to boost organic farming. The Brussels hearing is to provide
the Commission with the most complete and appropriate
guidance from stakeholders with a view to drawing up this
Commenting on the hearing, Franz Fischler, Commissioner
for Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries said:
"There are important questions we need to address.
How, for example, can we boost trade and consumption
of organic products in the EU? How can we facilitate
production and processing? How can we ensure traceability
and organic authenticity and, linked to this, how can
we support the co-existence of organic farming with
either conventional methods or genetically modified
agriculture? I hope that this hearing will provide us
with valuable input to answer these questions".
Over a 100 stakeholder organizations, Agricultural
Ministers from Member States, Acceding and Candidate
Countries and the press will be invited to participate
in this conference.
In the morning, two panels with stakeholder experts
will hold discussions on the place of organic farming
in European agriculture and in the wider European society.
The final session in the afternoon will conclude on
the morning's discussions.
Further details can be found at: http://europa.eu.int/comm/agriculture/events/organic/index_en.htm
Source: European Commission
Source Date: 9 January 2004