Copa-Cogeca asks Producer Organizations for support

"Producers associated to cooperatives cope better with market crises"

Copa and Cogeca have jointly issued a document on the future of the EU fruit and vegetable regime, in which they ask the EU to continue to provide specific support for the development of producer organizations (PO's), such as cooperatives, in the European fruit and vegetable sector.

The president of the "Fruits and vegetables" working group of the Copa and the Cogeca, Philippe Appeltans, said that "the aid scheme designed specifically for producer organizations has been a great success, helping to improve the functioning of the food supply chain and fighting unfair business practices. Moreover, the producers associated to cooperatives are better prepared to cope with market crises."

More than 1 million farms in the EU produce nutritious fruits and vegetables, generating a total turnover of 50 billion Euro; that is, 21% of the value of the EU's agricultural production. It is an important sector, not only because it supplies healthy food to the 500 million European citizens, but also because it contributes to the development of rural areas, growth and employment, accounting for 30% of agricultural employment. It also plays an important role in the integration of immigrants, to whom it provides temporary work.

"Therefore, Copa and Cogeca ask that the EU maintain the specific definition and regime of fruit and vegetable producers' organizations in the future CAP and continue the support regime for this sector, as it is an efficient tool to ensure the viability of the producers," they concluded. This statement is part of the debate on the future CAP.

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