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Pressemitteilung BoxID: 467861 (Agricultural and Rural Convention - ARC 2020)
  • Agricultural and Rural Convention - ARC 2020
  • 38, rue Saint-Sabin
  • 75011 Paris
  • http://www.arc2020.eu
  • Ansprechpartner
  • Stephanie Roth
  • +49 (30) 284-82324

30,000 people demanded better agriculture

(lifePR) (Brussels, ) One of Germany's biggest demonstrations in years saw 70 tractors, thousands of farmers and at least 30,000 participants from across Europe march through the streets of Berlin on Saturday, January 18th. With signs, costumes, marching bands and plenty of enthusiasm, demonstrators passed the Chancellery and made their demands for a better European agricultural policy clear.

The march was organized by ARC2020 member Meine Landwirtschaft, a coalition of organizations including farmers, beekeepers, environmental and animal welfare groups, as well as development organizations. ARC2020 invited international guests to join them on stage in front of the demonstrators. Speakers included author and CEO of Feeding the 5000 Tristram Stuart, Greek farmer entrepreneur Pavlos Georgiadis, and Envie de Paysans Campaign Coordinator Pierre-alain Prevost.

Seed regulation, food waste, CAP Reform and a host of other serious agri-food issues were the focus of organisers and participants alike. Particular emphasis was placed on proposed free trade agreement between the EU and the U.S. - the TTIP - Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. This could be used by companies to sue states for labour, environmental or other regulations if these regulations are higher in Europe than elsewhere. "Negotiations are happening behind closed doors on a Free Trade Agreement which would hurt farmers and consumers alike. The vast majority of people do not want chlorine chicken, hormones in their meat, or genetic engineering," said Jochen Fritz of Meine Landwirtschaft.

Statements:

Hubert Weiger, chairman of the Federation for Environment and Nature Conservation Germany (BUND):

"2014 is a crucial year. It is important to stop the free trade agreement between the U.S. and the EU. This Agreement endangers us, our children, animals and the environment. We cannot let that happen. We reject chlorine chicken, hormones in meat and genetic engineering on the plate. Instead, we need an agriculture that promotes farms instead of factory farming and exports. "

Carlo Petrini, founder of the International Slow Food Movement:

"Our message today is clear: If the EU loses its small farmers and its family farms, then it loses its history, it loses its culture, it loses its identity; it would not exist anymore."