Europe needs a “powerful export strategy” to deal with the desperate market situation currently facing EU farmers, Copa president, Albert Jan Maat, told visitors to a major farm show in Belgium at the weekend.
“The key words today are export, export, export,” he said when he addressed an audience at the Libramont Agricultural Fair, organised by the Wallonian Farmers Organisation (FWA).
Highlighting the excellence of EU farm produce quality, he stressed that farmers deserved better prices for this achievement than are currently being delivered.
“Unfortunately, too often politics influence this process, making it difficult for farmers to obtain a healthy position in the market,” said Mr Jan Matt (pictured above).
“The Russian boycott of our products is a case in point. There needs to be a much more adequate and solution-oriented approach from the European Institutions. The focus should be on developing a far more powerful strategy for exporting outside the EU.”
He then challenged the EU institutions to defend farmers and farm cooperatives, employing “new thinking” in order to address the “desperate economic situation” in which many producers currently find themselves.
FWA president, Daniel Coulonval, agreed, urging the European Commission to take the step of advancing the next round of direct payments so that they arrived with farmers before December 1.