Welcome note from the new IFOAM EU President, Jan Plagge
I am feeling honored and humbled with the trust you put in me and my colleagues of the Board by electing us during the 9th General Assembly in Brussels on 15 May.
Before we raise the glass to new beginnings, I would like to take a moment to thank my predecessor Christopher Stopes and the former Board for the relentless and fantastic work they have done for the development of the organic sector. I am feeling confident that with the collective expertise and drive of the new elected Board members, we will be able to continue building on this work, in an exciting and decisive time for the organic sector.
Organic farming is a success story. It is already transforming food and farming towards fairer, environmentally conscious, healthy and caring systems across Europe. It has the potential to contribute to delivering public goods such as improved soil and water quality or increased biodiversity in all European regions. This contribution should be reflected in the future Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) that should reward (organic) farmers for the public good they deliver to the society. More on the CAP reform can be found in the political hot spot of this newsletter. The debate on CAP will be continued at the 12th European Organic Congress in Vienna, Austria, 25-26 September 2018, where we hope to meet many of you.
Last, but not least, I would like to look back at the events that took place in Brussels 15 and 16 May. During the General Assembly on 15 May, 80 members from 20 countries approved all nine motions, which they felt have the potential to contribute positively to ‘Making IFOAM EU fit for the future’ and we thank them for this trust.
The 15 years anniversary of the IFOAM EU office in Brussels and the future of IFOAM EU were celebrated with the cutting of a big birthday cake in the presence of some 150 guests, including decision-makers, representatives of other Brussels based agri-food and environmental organisations and members during a wonderful evening in the heart of Brussels.
The two-day event concluded with the final conference of the SOLMACC project where innovative practices in organic farms for mitigating climate change were presented by the project partners and political recommendations were debated by a panel and distinguished speakers. Read the report about the event.
Finally, let me also introduce the new newsletter layout that evolves over time. After 99 issues of our newsletter, we have now converted to a new format that is responsive, mobile-friendly, indexed on search engines and more user friendly! If you prefer to print our newsletter, you can still do so using this file, however we encourage you to think before you print.
I am looking forward to work with all of you.
IFOAM EU President