Discover the projects organised at BIOFACH 2024 as part of the ”Being Organic in EU” campaign.

The second year of BEING ORGANIC in EU marked two well-attended sessions and a networking reception at BIOFACH 2024, the organic sector’s most important international fair.

Packaging & its impact on the organic sector

On 13 February, participants discussed packaging legislation and its effects on organic operators and options for organic sales. Sabine Von Wirén-Lehr, Director of Wirén-Lehr Consulting, provided a timeline of and valuable insights on changes within the EU Packaging and Packaging Waste legislation that will impact organic operators. Among the challenges they noted: the prohibition of most single use plastic packaging, targets for reusable containers, and defining the sale of bulk products. Following, Ulrike Schaal from Bundesverband Naturkost Naturwaren (BNN) elaborated on possible approaches for organic operators to cope with these legislative changes, such as offering unpackaged food and reusable packaging.

Building and strengthening our networks

On the same day, the project allowed us to bring together project stakeholders and organic practitioners at a well-attended networking event with delicious food and drinks. Project partners and organic practitioners mingled with European representatives from the European Commission’s Directorate General for Agriculture and Rural Development (DG AGRI) and national policymakers. Of course there was also a moment to learn more. IFOAM Organics Europe’s Director Eduardo Cuoco and Aldo Cervi, Project Coordinator at Federbio, provided food for thought about “Being Organic in EU”, opportunities to engage with organic stakeholders and the possibilities for organic in the new promotion policies programme.

EU budget available for organic

On 14 February, there was a session dedicated to the large sum available in the EU budget for promoting organic. Speakers learned how and when to apply for the promotion programmes for agricultural products from Diego Canga Fano, Director of the Directorate on Outreach, Research and Geographical indications at the European Commission’s DG AGRI. Mr Canga Fano took a deep dive into the different types of programmes, co-financing, and the eligibility rules.

Two IFOAM Organics Europe members showed how they use the promotion policies to develop organic. Their insights offered practical information on how to increase consumers’ trust in the EU organic logo and promote the organic sector’s economic profitability.

Heidi Haavisto Meier, Specialist at Pro Luomu, provided the audience with insights and lessons learnt in Nudging Organic, a promotion policies project exploring practical ways to improve organic sales in supermarkets. Partners are associations in Finland (Pro Luomu), Sweden (Organic Sweden), Belgium (BioForum), and the Netherlands (Bionext). Heidi outlined how the EU promotion program led participants to share good promotional practices among different EU countries.

Funded by the project Being Organic in EU of the European Union, coordinated by Federbio and Naturland. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Research Executive Agency (REA). Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.

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