Europatat welcomes the Farm to Fork Strategy published today by the European Commission. There is a need to secure a fair, healthy and environmentally-friendly food system, a message that the potato sector fully endorses. Nevertheless, it is key for the viability of the sector that the envisaged measures to create more efficient, healthy and climate-smart agri-food systems are developed following a pragmatic, coherent and realistic approach.
The Farm to Fork Strategy sets out regulatory and non-regulatory measures to make the EU food system a global standard for sustainability. In doing so, the Commission should take a pragmatic and realistic approach, ensuring that the new initiatives and targets are coherent with the current EU legislation and the alternatives already available in the market. These initiatives should also be pre-assessed and based on scientific evidence.
Given the disruption that the Farm to Fork regulatory framework can trigger on European food business’ commercial activities, the European Commission should invest in finding pragmatic and effective solutions to the challenges that the agri-food sector will inevitably encounter along the coming years. In this sense, Europatat is pleased to see that the Commission aims to stimulate research and innovation to provide solutions for sustainable food systems and uncover new market opportunities.
Empowering consumers to make healthy and sustainable food choices is also one of the key objectives of the Farm to Fork strategy. Potatoes are a sustainable and high-quality food with good nutritional and health benefits. Therefore, fresh potatoes fit in a healthy and sustainable diet, a message that Europatat and its members are already widely spreading but that should also be further promoted with the support of the new European Commission’s strategy presented today.
Until the measures announced in the Farm to Fork Strategy are further developed, European potato traders will continue their role as leading partners on the sustainability of the supply chain taking actions on food waste reduction, using better storage and packaging solutions, and informing consumers on healthy diet choices. Europatat’s members remain committed to respond to the current opportunities and social demands that are reflected in the Farm to Fork Strategy.