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ARC2020 April Newsletter

Hello subscribers, 

Well, we've been very busy bees here at ARC2020. Our Communications Director Oliver Moore represented ARC2020 at the EESC NAT committee meeting on the European Citizen's Initiative to ban glyphosate. Full account below.

And next month, we're off to Greece as media partners for the Forum Synergies European Rural Sustainability Gathering. This event, which runs from 17-20th May, will showcase and help network dozens of incredible rural, co-operative, sustainable initiatives and solutions. 

You can come too! It's free  - including accommodation and food - book here by 30th April!

Forum Synergies’ rural sustainability gatherings bring together people from all walks of life to learn  - together in a conference setting and via thought-provoking field trips  - about best sustainable rural practices. The social economy, cooperatives, grassroots initiatives, as well as urgent topics as access to land, sustainable farming, economic activities and networking are all part of this event in rural Greece.

Field trips are organised around agriculture (including cooperatives/ and processing) Social (including cultural and educational activities) and economic (including the local economy, cooperation and networking.)

More info here
Draft Programme here
Register here 

Co-organised by Karditsa Development Agency, Iliosporoi Network, Euracademy Association and Peliti Seed Network.

And stay tuned to the ARC2020 website and social media (Facebook & Twitter)  for more on this and other relevant rural, farming, food and environmental news, views, opinion and analysis.

Best wishes,

Dr. Oliver Moore, Luise Körner and the ARC2020 Communications Team.
Food Waste
EESC Meeting on #BanGlyphosate:
Dr. Oliver Moore of ARC2020 speaks in Brussels

A European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) has recently been launched to call on European Commission to propose a ban on glyphosate-based herbicides, “exposure to which has been linked to cancer in humans, and has led to ecosystems degradation” according to the ECI organisers. If the ECI4 receives the support of a million people from at least seven member states, the Commission will be obliged to consider a legislative response and provide justification for its decision. Dr. Oliver Moore spoke on behalf of ARC2020 during the debate at the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC). Watch the recording of the debate at our website.
Forced Labour
High Nature Value Farmland (HNVf):
Rewarding Farmers for Biodiversity
There is a need to create an environmental market which adequately values and rewards farmers for the quality of public goods they produce. One potential tool for enhanced targeting of financial supports to farmers in HNVf areas could be through wider application of results-based agri-environment schemes. In these schemes, payments are linked to the quality of the environment and biodiversity produced on the farm. It operates on a simple principle – higher payments go to farmers producing higher quality environmental goods. Dolores Byrne outlines the case for HNVf at our website.
Forced Labour in the Fields:
Addressing it at Policy & Citizen Level

Did you know we still have slavery in the EU? Its difficult to associate salad leaves or a side portion of vegetables, sourced from within the EU, as funding forced labour. Nevertheless, report after report on the terms and conditions of workers  – especially in horticulture on the European side of the Mediterranean rim  – have revealed  appalling conditions which include forced labour, routinised rape and inhuman shelter and food. These fit the International Labour Organisation’s definition of forced labour. There are ways forward, at policy and citizen level. Read the full article by Dr. Oliver Moore at our website.

This year Forum Synergies’ European Rural Sustainability Gathering will take place in Karditsa (region of Thessaly, Greece), from 17-21 May 2017.

The three-day gathering will be an opportunity to meet people with a spirit of cooperation and action for sustainable rural development from across Europe.

What Role for Rural Cooperation in Greece?
Vassileios Bellis is General Director of the Development Agency of Karditsa, in Thessalia Greece. He is one of the initiators of a movement of new social enterprises and cooperatives active in the region for many years, including local energy, cooperative banking, rural tourism and many others. Hannes Lorenzen spoke with him ahead of the upcoming European Rural Sustainability Gathering. Find the interview and more information on the gathering here.
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