Seed World

Future of EU Farming Depends on Balanced and Effective Legislation on Plant Reproductive Material: A Letter to MEPs

Ahead of the imminent European Parliament plenary vote on Plant Reproductive Material (PRM), a consortium of stakeholders, notably Copa Cogeca, Euroseeds, Europatat, Coceral, the European Beet Growers (CIBE), and CEPM Maiz’Europe, representing the majority of PRM suppliers and users, has voiced crucial concerns.

In a press release, Euroseeds states: “The European Commission’s proposal, while requiring improvements, aimed to strike a balance between common rules for all producers and specific adaptations for diverse plant materials and markets. However, the current text proposed by COMAGRI risks compromising this balance by introducing significant exemptions, that could potentially lead to an uncontrolled market lacking official oversight and traceability.”

During a period marked by profound uncertainty and adversities for the European agricultural sector, the proposed legislation falls short of honoring commitments to bolster Europe’s farmers, the release notes, stating itt disregards the unique biological attributes and plant health hazards, thereby jeopardizing sustainability endeavors and food security initiatives.

Given that PRM forms the bedrock of agricultural and food production, it demands strict adherence to official oversight and adherence to Plant Health standards. Moreover, the recommendations outlined in the COMAGRI report regarding testing protocols for novel varieties raise apprehensions, especially considering the impacts of climate change and the imperative for sustainability assurances.

“As PRM is the cornerstone of agricultural and food production, it necessitates compliance with official oversight and adherence to Plant Health requirements. Additionally, the suggestions highlighted by the COMAGRI report regarding testing systems for new varieties raise concerns, particularly in the face of climate change impacts and the need for sustainability assurances.”

Amidst these challenges confronting the agricultural community, there’s an increasing call for testing protocols that are effective, adaptable to regional circumstances, and financially viable for all stakeholders.

The coalition urges the Members of the European Parliament to deliberate on the proposed amendments, advocating for a more productive and sustainable EU agriculture. A revitalized dialogue and ongoing cooperation are vital in crafting PRM legislation that caters to the interests of all parties involved and secures a resilient agricultural future.

Read Euroseeds Letter to MEPs here