Copa-Cogeca reveals key points to address the covid-19 situation in Europe
Copa-Cogeca, the European body for farmers and agri-cooperatives urges the European Commission to act fast and firm to mitigate disruption that appeared in the single market and to identify any other pressure point in this covid-19 crisis. "Given that the agri-food supply chain is highly integrated and operating across borders, any blocks of supply and workers will inevitably disrupt business. Our ability to provide food for all will depend on the preservation of the EU Single Market", said Copa-Cogeca in a joint statement with Food&Drink Europe and CELCAA, the EU umbrella association representing the trade in agri-food and commodities.
6 major key points to address were presented in the statement, with the last two related to science-led actions in this crisis and better-coordinated work between the European institution. The other critical points are as follows:
"1. Preserving the Single Market is the best option to ensure a stable and safe food supply chain, and food security for everybody in Europe and beyond. We welcome the recent Commission guidelines on border management as a good first step. Despite these guidelines, however, we continue to face severe disruptions.
2. We urge the Commission to work with Member States to explore ways to support the agri-food sector which has already and will continue to come under immense financial pressure. In particular, over the coming weeks and months we urge the Commission to consider Europe’s 11 million farmers, 4.7 million manufacturing workers, 294,000 food and drink businesses (including 22,000 agri-cooperatives) and 35,000 trading companies.
3. We urge the Commission to work with Member States to monitor the potential lack of workers (including seasonal workers) and the knock-on impact on production and to prepare contingency plans. The food supply chain should be regarded as an essential sector in all EU Member States.
4. We urge the Commission to monitor the price of raw materials and transport as well as unfair trading practices," it is said in the statement.
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