Chairman for the day Bart Nicolaï
The symposium was built into four content themes. In session one attention was paid to the evolution of the chicory production and trade in Europe, as well as the consumption and price formation. In session two speakers from Belgium, Germany, France, Holland and Switzerland made a SWOT-analysis of the chicory cultivation in their country. Session three was about sustainability, in particular the application of "Responsibly Fresh" in the chicory sector, the sustainable use of crop protection, saving energy in chicory companies and fermenting chicory roots to limited waste. Finally, session four dealt with the theme diversification. What possibilities are there, what place do buyers see in the shelves and what about ground chicory?
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Koenraad Debackere, managing director KU Leuven
The chairman for the day Bart Nicolaï welcomed the audience and the symposium was officially opened by Koenraad Debackere, managing director KU Leuven.
Session 1: Overview of chicory cultivation in Europe
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The speakers of session1
Session 2: SWOT-analysis of chicory production
For Belgium, Germany, France, Holland and Switzerland a SWOT-analysis was made of the chicory production by Filip Fontaine (Coöbra), Fritz Boß (Arbeitsgemeinschaft Chicoreeproduzenten), Catherine Decourcelle (APEF), Roel Spruit (LTO) and Sebastien Pasche (Swiss&Diva). The kinds of cultivation, technical aspects of the cultivation, commercialisation and the future of chicory were discussed per country. On the whole the trend in the European countries is the same: not enough is being consumed. In Belgium chicory needs to become 'hot' again and in Germany the product needs to be promoted, as it isn't promoted at all. There has been a huge campaign in France, but this had little result. The average price in Holland is around 70 cents per kilo and this is lower than in Belgium. Roel Spruit thinks it should be placed better in supermarkets. In Switzerland the production is increasing a little, but the consumption needs a boost. At the end of this session a question was asked about the prices in Switzerland and Germany, but this wasn't answered clearly. The conclusion was that it should be promoted more, nationally and internationally.
The speakers of session 2
Session 3: Sustainability
In this session Ann De Craene (VBT), Pasquale Di Rubbo (Copa Cogeca), Claude Vanderschelden (Inagro) and Philippe Mengel (GreenWatt) spoke. They discussed sustainability. Of course, the new sustainability hall mark Responsibly Fresh was mentioned here, in which the focus in on biodiversity, low impact, food frugality and proximity.
CopaCogeca gave an account on sustainable use of crop protection and their position in this. Inagro spoke about energy in chicory companies where a lot of energy saving measures are used, and GreenWatt presented how to limit waste. They have developed a new concept in which the problem waste is converted into profit.
Speakers of session 3
Session 4: Diversification
At the end of the symposium Fritz Boß was brought forward and announced that the 22nd Chicory Biennial will take place in Germany.
22nd Biennial in Germany!
Organised, sponsored and supported by:
In the evening the visitors enjoyed a lovely Gala dinner. Of course chicory had been used in the dishes. During this dinner Geert Dejonckheere (not present), Ad Klaassen, Fritz Boß, Els Borbeels and Philippe Appeltans were honoured.