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Horticultural coop agreement from France, Italy, Belgium, Netherlands and Spain

As part of the International Apple Fair Intepoma, held in Bolzano, Italy, an agreement has been signed between the horticultural cooperative organizations from Italy, France, Belgium, Holland and Spain. One very important term in the agreement is to request that the European Commission maintain and strengthen the aid system given to operational programs developed by the Organization of Fruit and Vegetable Producers (OPFHs). A meeting has been set up, with the participation of the representatives of the Agriculture Committee of the European Parliament, from the Italian Agriculture Minister and Cabinet of Commissioner Ciolos.

The meeting was to analyze jointly the document of "public consultation" that the Commission launched last summer, which gave the starting signal for the Reform of the aid system for OPFH's operational programs, which will result, as recently confirmed by the Commission, in a regulatory proposal before the summer of 2013.

Cirilo Arnandis, Chairman of Sector's Council of Fruit and Vegetable Cooperative Agro-food of Spain, has asked in his speech before the EU administration, that institutions not only see the insufficient degree of current industry concentration around the OP, but also and especially in the achievements that were reached thanks to the performance of these organizations through their operational programs.

In the conclusion of this discussion forum, Arnandis has asked the Commission and the European Parliament that "before drafting any regulatory proposal that could affect our industry, to ask this question: What would happen if 40% of
fruit and vegetable production was not associated with OPFH?".

It must be remembered that in the "public consultation", the vast majority ruled before the Commission, regardless of their country of origin or condition, in favor of preserving and strengthening the current system of operational programs by the OP.
This position was confirmed at the meeting of the Copa-Cogeca, agriculture representative body before the European Union, last week.

The Bolzano Agreement signed by organizations representing cooperatives of the major producing countries, deepens and at the same time calls on the Commission and the European Parliament, when drafting legislative proposals, not to lean toward experimental options, but to allocate the budget and sector's support measures to the horticultural sector by: the concentration and recovery of marketing, to improve the position of producers in the market. Thus, cooperatives have defended the maintenance and reinforcement of the current aid system of the Organizations of Fruit and Vegetables Producers, funded by the 1st Pillar, as the only realistic option.


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