Although the German annual harvest and arable land report was revised at the end of August in consideration of the climate crisis, it still includes changes that are still “symbolic politics” for environmental NGOs and organic farmers. EURACTIV report in Germany.
According to the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, with floods, cold waves, and extremely hot and cold weather, 2021 will be recorded in history as a “special storm year.”
In this year’s Harvest report, There are warnings that the harvest is significantly lower than expected, and because of the increase in grain prices, the cost of feed for German farmers has increased.
The international non-governmental organization WWF stated: “The 2021 harvest report shows that German agriculture has been severely affected by the climate crisis.” The report also clearly stated that “Germany’s agricultural policies in recent years are too inconsistent and urgently need to be readjusted,” it added Say.
The reform of the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) provides a rare opportunity to create better framework conditions for this repositioning and “make climate protection an integral part of agriculture”-however, the German Minister of Agriculture Julia K Julia Klöckner missed this opportunity, in the view of WWF.
2035 Cultivated Land Strategy: Transition to “Greener” Agriculture?
this National Cultivated Land Strategy in 2035Klöckner proposed at the end of August to provide further opportunities for repositioning.
According to the Federal Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection, “In the era of climate change, this strategy aims to demonstrate options and approaches for sustainable development. […] Cultivated land must be used”.
It added that the political direction of the strategic document was “determined by the European Green Agreement, which is the new growth strategy of the European Commission”.
“Within the framework of the CAP, the federal government is committed to giving greater rewards to agriculture for its achievements in protecting the environment, biodiversity, climate, animal welfare, and natural resources,” the ministry also stated.
The goal of the strategy is to ensure the supply of high-quality food, protect the environment and biodiversity, and expand the contribution of agriculture to climate protection, while adapting it to the consequences of climate change.
The strategy should also help the industry regain social recognition in the country, and farmers should be able to live a better life from work in the future.
In order to achieve these ambitious goals, the Ministry has proposed a series of action areas, including higher fertilizer efficiency, better integrated crop protection, greater crop diversity, climate-adapted planting concepts and optimal use of digital potential. , And various individual measures.
But according to WWF, all this is just “symbolic politics.”
As expected, the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection did not cooperate with the Ministry of Environment, but instead proposed its own arable strategy, although this isolated approach contradicted the approach of the Agriculture Future Committee, which stated that “agriculture Challenges can only be overcome together”.
Most importantly, according to the nature conservation organization BUND, the strategy document is “very disappointing.”
BUND Chairman Olaf Bandt stated that the changes to strategy to deal with the consequences of the climate crisis are “not enough given this dramatic situation”. He added that the draft “lack of specific statements on implementation and financing” and that Klockner’s farming strategy “only provides band-aids rather than help”.
The German Union for the Conservation of Nature and Biodiversity (NABU) also criticized this paper.
According to NABU’s Federal Executive Director Leif Miller, the strategy is “too unspecific” and “does not comply with the farming nature and climate protection measures promised at the beginning of the legislative period.”
After the Ministry of Agriculture has initiated the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and other “long overdue reforms”, the 2035 Cultivated Land Agriculture Strategy is now a “disappointing legislature for agricultural policy.”
A “completely non-binding” strategic document
Farmers also generally do not believe in the Ministry’s strategic documents.
Although the farming strategy “recognizes that farming must be changed”, the plan proposed by Klöckner “cannot achieve its goals because it is completely non-binding”, Peter Röhrig (BÖLW), executive director of the German Organic Food Industry Federation, told EURACTIV Germany.
He added that an effective strategy must “show how Germany intends to reduce the use of pesticides by 50% and how to achieve 25% of organic agriculture by 2030”.
According to Röhrig, the release of the strategy a few weeks before the federal election indicated that “the ministry is concerned with communication rather than substantial changes.”
Through her CAP program, Klöckner’s most important thing is to “ensure that the most effective agricultural method for less pesticides and more biodiversity-that is, organic agriculture-falls behind”.
[Edited by Gerardo Fortuna/Zoran Radosavljevic]