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Rural Europe Takes Action | The Sámi Environmental Programme

From the Sámi perspective, all matters are environmental matters. The Sámi Environmental Programme is a holistic framework with a long-term, decolonised perspective on sustainability and Indigenous culture. Josefina Skerk, former Vice President of the Sámi Parliament, shares powerful perspectives on life, land and climate justice in a conversation originally published in “Rural Europe Takes Action – No more business as usual”, the policy guide launched by ARC2020 and Forum Synergies in June 2022. […]

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Op Ed | Hunger Games and Locked in Pesticides

In this op-ed, Matthias Wolfschmidt of Foodwatch International unpacks the EU’s food system, its reliance on cheap imports, its generation of food waste, the power of lobby groups and Europe’s subsequent reliance on damaging pesticides and fertilizers. In this context, Wolfschmidt considers how the weaponisation of hunger embeds a lock in of problematic agri-industrial inputs, while also pointing to a way out of this bind within 15 years.   […]

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Rural Europe Takes Action | Seeds of Collaboration

“Rural Europe Takes Action – No more business as usual”, a policy guide for rural Europe by ARC2020 and Forum Synergies, launched in June 2022. Today’s extract from Rural Europe Takes Action tells the story of the Balkan Seeds Network, a network of scientists and seed savers’ organisations tapping into the rich biodiversity and agricultural heritage of South Eastern Europe to stimulate resilient food systems, and establishing a paradigm of collaboration for the Balkan region.  […]

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On Meaningful Diversity: Reflecting on 75 years of Rural Sociology at Wageningen University

75 years have passed since Evert Willem Hofstee was appointed to the position of Professor at Wageningen University, which marks the beginning of rural sociology as a discipline and as a university department. What are the key features and how has it developed from 1946 to present? Prof. Dr. Han Wiskerke reflects on the 75th anniversary of what is now called Rural Sociology Group. […]

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The Good Food Good Farming Pesticide Check-up

As decision-makers consider the future of pesticide regulation in the EU, Good Food Good Farming is running a citizen science project inviting citizens to do a “Pesticide Check-up” by getting their hair tested for pesticides. The project is open to participation until June 30.  […]

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Reversing Rule and Exception – Transformative New Integrated Policy for Rural Agri & Food presented in European Parliament 

A book filled with “extraordinary examples of ongoing transformations of our rural world” was launched in the European Parliament this week. Key political stakeholders – including European Parliament President Roberta Metsola, Isabel Estrada Carvalhais, and Dacian Ciolos – agreed on the need to start to build a process to explore and develop ideas contained therein- including a radical new Regulation. So what are these ideas? […]

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First look – Rural Europe Takes Action e-book

Today we have something special for you.  Another rural Europe is possible – and its happening. Today, we launch Rural Europe Takes Action – no more business as usual. We’ve spent many months working with our friends in Forum Synergies to bring an inspirational yet practical set of examples and proposals, of visions and strategies, together into one handy, approachable text. And it’s now ready for you to read. […]

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Diversifying Europe’s Rural Economy | SHERPA

As rural Europe deals with its challenges and embraces its opportunities, what role for production change and diversification? And what are the key factors involved? SHERPA -Sustainable Hub for Engaging into Rural Policies with Actors – a Horizon 2020 project,  addresses this topic. Key areas highlighted that can lead the process of diversification include entrepeneurship, digitalisation, bioeconomy and the food chain.   […]

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Rocky Road – EU Regs, Deforestation and a Just Transition for Smallholders

After “organic,” “non-GMO,” or even “palm-oil free,” there may be a new label coming to products for EU consumers: “Deforestation-free.” But might there be unintended consequences for some of the world’s poorest smallholders, who also happen to be those least responsible for climate breakdown? Ashley Parsons and Oliver Moore report. […]

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In Full – Agroecology Europe Barcelona Letter

Here is the full text of Agroecology Europe’s Barcelona Letter on Agroecology. Policy and investments, inclusion and participation, rural-urban connections, pricing, breeding, technology and transition all feature in this call out for a different approach to how we the people do farming, land and food. […]

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A Toxic Multi-Billion-Euro Business Costing Citizens Big Time  

What is the scale and impact of pesticides in agri-food? Where is power expressed, and what are the costs associated with the use of these agri-industrial inputs? A new concept note and policy brief throws some light on the topic. Op-Ed by Le BASIC – Christophe Alliot, Sylvain Ly CCFD-Terre Solidaire – Maureen Jorand Pollinis – Nicolas Larmaan PAN-Europe – Martin Dermine and CEO – Hans Vanscharen.  […]

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Netherlands | Reducing the Food System’s External Costs

The food environment, a shift towards vegetables, and true cost true prices. There are the themes our colleagues in the Dutch Food Transition Coalition focused on in a submission on sustainable food systems in the EU. You can read an adapted version of the Dutch submission below, written by Willem Lageweg (director) Joost de Jong (strategic advisor) Dutch Food Transition Coalition. […]

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Farm to Fork Strategy: Ambitious, Realistic Innovation Pathway for the European food System

Since the release of the Farm to Fork strategy, the Commission has faced a considerable amount of criticism, which generally cites the potential economic and food security impacts of F2F. Here IDDRI experts analyse the methodological limitations underlying this criticism and shows that a more systemic approach instead reinforce the relevance, coherence and realism of the Commission’s strategy. […]