The agro-food supply chain connects important and diverse sectors of the European economy that are essential for economic, social and environmental welfare as well as for the health of European citizens. Over recent years, there has been a shift in bargaining power in the supply chain, mostly to the advantage of the retail sector and to the detriment of primary producers. The position of the most vulnerable actors, such as farmers, should therefore be addressed, in particular by ensuring that prices that allow the farmer to make a fair profit are paid throughout the agro-food supply chain and by putting an end to unfair trading practices.
In the opinion, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC)
- welcomes the communication from the European Commission regarding the fertiliser crisis and its impact on European farmers (higher costs), consumers (food price inflation) and industry workers;
- calls for both short-term and longer-term measures to limit the EU's dependence on imported mineral fertilisers, reduce the environmental impact of crop fertilisation and improve the functioning of the EU fertiliser market;
- welcomes the establishment of a new fertiliser market observatory in 2023 to ensure transparency in the EU fertiliser market;
The EESC Permanent Study Group on Sustainable Food Systems aims to contribute to the development of a comprehensive food policy in the EU. This leaflet presents its main priorities and ongoing work.
The EESC strongly believe that ensuring food security is not just about producing more food. Supplying diverse, nutritious and good quality foods, supporting smallholder farmers, sustaining soil and water resources and reducing food waste are objectives that should also be pursued.
The EESC aims to promote civil society's role in food security, for example through its opinions, its cooperation with the FAO, participating as observer in the UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS) or through UN International Year events.
Presque 90 millions de tonnes de nourriture sont gaspillées chaque année en Europe et près d'un tiers de la nourriture produite pour la consommation humaine est perdue ou gaspillée à l'échelle mondiale...
Food security concerns us all, because it is about the earth's resources, which we all share and use, and because food is vital for life. That’s why we need to ensure that everybody in the world has enough food to eat or the resources and means to grow their own food. Today, 16 October, is World Food Day. For us in the wealthy Europe it is a day to reflect and to consider what we can do to contribute to a change.