GlobalGAP chairman Nigel Garbutt presents award to VBT general
In the file of Responsibly Fresh, which was lodged by VBT, the central product was chicory. Two growers were also mentioned. A typically Belgian GlobalGAP certified chicory grower is Joost Depaepe, who also as a sample company is included in the entry. Grower Joost Depaepe supplies his products to Veiling Coöbra and is the company working under Responsibly Fresh. Joost Depaepe started a horticultural company in 1985 and since 1999 he has concentrated completely on hydro-cultivation of chicory. Flip Fontaine, general director of Coöbra, reacted enthusiastically to the fact that one of their growers became the winner. "Chicory fits well within the Responsibly Fresh requirements and the cultivation of the best quality in the area of GlobalGAP. Joost's company is a good example of this, as he puts the focus on local and sustainable hydro-cultivation. He was very proud of his prize." The other chicory grower, who was added to the file, was Marnick de Visschere, who supplies Veiling REO.
Click here for a previously published article about grower Joost Depaepe
Traditionally GlobalGAP had some hundreds of international members present at the annual conference. During the conference a number of them delivered speeches: government services, non government organisations and interest groups, buyers-retailers, certificate institutes and of course producers and their organisations and cooperatives. During three days evaluations were presented and together they worked for the further development of GlobalGAP.
Belgian delegation pleased with the award won
Just as emphasized by GlobalGAP the Belgian fruit and vegetable sector stressed till recently only a few aspects of sustainability. With the start of Responsibly Fresh in February 2012 this focal point has now been extended to sustainable development. 'To win this first GAP award means that the VBT and the connected cooperatives have made the right choice with Responsibly Fresh. It will be a stimulant for the seven auction houses and their products to bring their engagement to sustainable development further in practice daily' as per Philippe Appeltans, general secretary VBT.
More information: www.responsibly-fresh.com