Agricultural organizations want EU strategy for protein cultivation

25-03-2022 | |
Photo: Canva
Photo: Canva

3 European interest groups are calling for a plant protein strategy.

Farmers’ organisation Copa & Cogeca, cattle feed organisation Fefac and organization for the seed industry Euroseeds have called on the European Commission to take a leading role in promoting domestic cultivation and the use of European plants proteins.

A legal framework

They require a legal framework and clear targets to meet the increasing demand for plant proteins, including from the food industry. A legal framework should help make the European plant protein sector competitive.

… Europe is unlikely to become fully self-sufficient in the short or medium term…

“There is no simple and easy solution to overcome the EU’s shortage of protein-rich sources. Despite advances in plant breeding, cultivation and processing technology, Europe is unlikely to become fully self-sufficient in the short or medium term (especially in the absence of access to the best breeding techniques, plant protection products and fertilisers),” the organisations said.

Small cultivation

According to them, protein crops are in many cases regarded as small crops or special crops, which means that there are insufficient solutions at farm level to control plant diseases and pests.

Biological targets in the Green Deal

The organisations also cite the new biological targets in the Green Deal. The rules for this and possible trade distortions will amplify ‘the structural shortage of biological proteins’.

Long-term incentives

They specifically ask for long-term incentives for stakeholders, insight into the production and consumption of vegetable protein for food and a framework for competitive research. They also want more communication to consumers about sustainable agricultural production in the EU and the benefits of a diverse and balanced diet.

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Carolien Kloosterman Business editor