SME ORGANICS: Biofach 2017 session on using Action Plans to develop organics in Europe

IFOAM EU organised a session on using action plans to develop organics in Europe on 16 February 2017 at BIOFACH – the World´s Leading Trade Fair for Organic Food which place in Nuremberg, Germany between 15-18 February. The session was organised to promote the SME ORGANICS project launched in April 2016 saw attendees explore how organic action plans can provide a framework for devising strategies, targets and funding mechanisms to help organic sectors develop - particularly at regional level.

IFOAM EU was joined by Jérôme Cinel, Director of INTERBIO Nouvelle Aquitaine, a French regional organisation for the organic sector and member of the SME ORGANICS consortium. Cinel presented the main aims and objectives of the SME ORGANICS project in terms of improving policies and programmes for enhancing the competitiveness and sustainability of the SMEs in the organic sector at regional level through the development of organic action plans.

Otto Schmid of the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL), a member of the SME ORGANICS consortium for the Swiss region of Aargau, gave an overview about the strategic important of organic action plans as a tool to create a partnership between policymakers and organic stakeholders in meeting common goals and objectives.

Finally, on invitation of the SME ORGANICS consortium, Andrea Hrabalová of Czech Technology Platform for Organic Agriculture looked at how the action plan concept is being used at national level to develop organic farming in the Czech Republic.

SME ORGANICS seeks to improve policies and programmes under the Investment for Growth and Jobs goal in order to enhance the competitiveness and sustainability of the SMEs in the organic sector of the participating regions. The project aims both at enhancing entrepreneurship but also at supporting the existing SMEs in improving their performance in order to enforce the growth capacity of the entire organic regional sector in regional, national and international markets.

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