20th anniversary of Joint Spanish-French Fruit and Vegetable Committee

On 18 December 1997, the Joint Spanish-French Fruit and Vegetable Committee met in Madrid for the first time. This Monday is thus marked by the 20th anniversary of its creation at the request of the governments of France and Spain, which aimed to tackle existing conflicts in this sector and avoid crisis situations. The Committee became an important forum for dialogue and cooperation, and Italy joined it in 2011.

That first meeting in Madrid received the support of the Spanish administration and it served to address sectoral aspects, such as the improvement of the Common Market Organization, which was then specific to fruit and vegetables and which would later be integrated into the single CMO.

It was agreed to create a restricted technical group, made up of representatives of both countries, both from the professional sectors and from the Administration. Its goal would be to analyse the changes to be introduced in the CMO in order to present common proposals before the European Commission. It was also agreed to set up a specific group for tomatoes. The second meeting of the Joint Committee took place the month following its establishment, on 29 January 1998, in Paris; the third took place on 27 March in Madrid, and the fourth on 16 June 1998 in Paris. Since then, the Joint Committee has been held annually.

Within the framework of the Committee, specific contact groups have been established for individual products, in which the situation of the markets, problems and other issues of common interest are analysed. The conclusions of the specific groups are transferred to the plenary of the Joint Committee, which formalises the decisions on joint agreements or initiatives to be adopted.

Along with the tomato and strawberry contact groups, which were the first ones to be set up, there are now also garlic, peach-nectarine, pear and apple groups, and since recently, a citrus one has also been created. Moreover, there are also contact groups with a transversal nature, such as the one devoted to Plant Health. The Committee has also been the framework for the development of joint parallel activities.

The Spanish part of the Joint Spanish-French-Italian Committee for fruit and vegetables consists of representatives of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Food and Environment, agricultural organizations, Cooperatives Agroalimentarias and FEPEX.

Source: fepex.es

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