IFOAM Organics Europe’s roundtable on organic canteens gathers torchbearers for fruitful exchanges

On 28 March, IFOAM Organics Europe organised a roundtable on organic canteens, bringing together relevant actors in the field to exchange best practices regarding organic products in public procurement. Associations, municipalities, certifiers, local actors participated in the discussion with twenty-two people from seventeen different organisations attending. The roundtable was divided into three panels dedicated to three major topics for organic canteens.

The first panel tackled the state of play and challenges related to advocacy and policymaking on organic canteens. The exchange centred around EU political developments on public procurement, and more practical issues, such as the different legal regimes in the EU Member States, the lack of data on certain points such as the leverage effect of organic public procurement, and the need for a better technical help for farmers to achieve a necessary transition.

The second panel covered good practices. Clara Garrone started by presenting Mouans-Sartoux’s Food Project. This panel was an opportunity for a rich, in-depth exchange, highlighting local initiatives, like in Paris and Rome, but also allowing for displaying beneficial practices, like the valuable effects of training within the transformation chain, or networking between communities.

The third panel was dedicated to networks and levels of action. It started by the presentation of Ecocert’s study on micro-transition pathways and exchanges on the need for integrating every part of the chain and the concrete challenges it triggered followed. The panel put a special focus on logistics, transportation, administrative needs for actors that must organise and adapt to these questions. Farmers’ concerns on their capacity to organise, respond tenders and procurement calls, were covered in depth.

Following these three panels, the Buy Better Food Campaign, in which IFOAM Organics Europe is strongly involved, was presented to the members by its coordinator.

For any question on public procurement, please contact [email protected].

The work of IFOAM Organics Europe on this topic is co-financed by the LIFE programme of the European Union, under the under the Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA). This publication only reflects the views of the authors and its sole responsibility lies with IFOAM Organics Europe. CINEA is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information provided.

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