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Farmers, Forest Owners Along with Co-ops Driving Force Behind Green Jobs

30 May 2017

EU - Copa and Cogeca underlined at a major workshop yesterday during this years’ Green Week the important role farmers and their cooperatives play in driving green jobs in Europe.

The theme of this year's Green Week in Brussels is Green Jobs for a Greener Future, taking place from 29 May to 2 June, and focuses on how EU environmental policies and other policies create green jobs and contribute to economic, sustainable and socially responsible growth in the EU.

Connected to this, Copa and Cogeca held a workshop "Farmers, Forest owners and their Cooperatives: the driving force behind green jobs" that brought together representatives from the EU agriculture and forestry sector, European institutions as well as researchers and other relevant stakeholders to exchange views on different initiatives and practices that contribute to a greener future.

Speaking at the event, Chris Botterman, President of Geopa-Copa highlighted farmers and cooperatives commitment contribute to a greener future. He defined the farming sector as an important driver for socio-economic sustainability.

In this context, he underlined the need to recognize and support the farming community for the various services it provides like ecosystem services and for using natural resources more efficiently, for delivering public and environmental goods and services to the benefit of the society.

Sessions were held at the event which focused on green jobs, green skills and green growth. Several examples from all over Europe -Germany, Belgium, Austria, Sweden, Great Britain, Hungary and Finland - were presented:

  • ongoing educational programmes ensuring the transfer of traditional and innovative knowledge and skills;
  • the successfully implemented agro-ecological innovation programmes that do not only contribute to environmentally sustainability but also support farmers from an economic point of view;
  • concrete examples targeting the efficient recycling of biogenic materials whilst reducing waste and creating economic growth and new jobs;
  • an innovative project on more sustainable energy production, avoiding the use of fossil energy.

Wrapping up, Copa and Cogeca Secretary-General Pekka Pesonen underlined the farming sectors crucial role in ensuring a more sustainable society overall.

"Economic, environmental and social sustainability are at the core of any farm and agri-cooperative business," he said.

They actively contribute to the socioeconomic part of sustainability, by maintaining and creating green jobs, ensuring growth and competitive business through investment in their sector.

From a policy perspective, he underlined the need to ensure that the future Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) fosters a more balanced approach between the three equal and indivisible dimensions of sustainability.

ThePigSite News Desk

Top image via Shutterstock



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