Read our new leaflet on plant health care in organic farming

Have you ever heard of all the preventive plant protection measures implemented by organic farmers to produce food without using external inputs? Did you know that herbicides and synthetic pesticides are prohibited in organic agriculture? And that organic farmers are only authorised to use plant protection products consisting of natural substances? Speaking of natural substances, are you aware of the challenges related to their registration as plant protection products?

To guide you through the answers to these and other questions, IFOAM Organics Europe released a leaflet Plant health care in organic farming – The role of natural substances in a biodiversity-based system. In a small number of pages, the leaflet describes organic farming’s systemic approach to plant health, including enhanced biodiversity, preventive measures and natural substances.

The leaflet also explains why the current EU legislative framework on plant protection products is not adapted to natural substances, highlighting the main technical, structural, and economical challenges surrounding the registration of these substances at EU level, and illustrated with concrete examples.

This leaflet is key to understand the complementarity between the targets of the Farm to Fork and Biodiversity strategies, which aim to increase organic land by 25% while reducing the use of chemical pesticides by 50% by 2030. Organic farming’s unique approach to plant protection has rightly been identified as essential to move toward a food system that is less dependent on external toxic inputs. The organic sector is ready to deliver, and the leaflet provides concrete policy recommendations to make this ambition a reality.

For more information on plant health and IFOAM Organics Europe’s work on this issue, please contact [email protected]. IFOAM Organics Europe members can find more information on the member extranet and background materials in the arguments database on the member extranet (main messages, arguments/FAQs, visuals & videos).

For information about what you can gain from being a member, read our membership page and contact [email protected].

This publication is co-financed by the LIFE programme of the European Union, under the under the Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA). It 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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