The 15th edition of the European Organic Congress will take place online, live from Lisbon, on 16-18 June 2021. Organised by IFOAM Organics Europe and their Portuguese partner Agrobio, the event will dive deep into the organic sector, its structures and its politico-legislative momentum at EU level.

European Organic Congress 2021

European Organic Congress 2021: how to achieve the transition towards a more sustainable food system

This year’s Congress aims to inspire the participants by focusing on how the agri-food sector’s initiatives enhance the transition towards a more sustainable food system, through the aid of leading examples from representatives and experts amidst the organic sector. Therefore, the event will bring together organic stakeholders, high-level speakers and moderators from across Europe to talk about policy developments in organic food and farming in six sessions sheduled for 16, 17 and 18 June from 10am to 15.30pm.

This year’s European Organic Congress will cover:

  • The alignment of Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) Strategic Plans with the EU Green Deal
  • Expected changes in the new EU Organic Regulation
  • Organic’s contribution to climate change mitigation, sustainable food systems and rural development

The congress program is as follows:

16 June: The new CAP and European Green Deal & Organic farming in Portugal

After the Congress opening, the first session will assess if the new CAP and the national ambitions through the proposed CAP strategic plans are in line with the EU objectives of the Green Deal, in particular the target to reach 25% organic land by 2030.After a lunch break, the current situation of Organic Farming in Portugal will be discussed, diving deep into the work being done on the ground in Portugal, linking organic farming with health and biodiversity.

17 June: Climate mitigation and sequestration in agriculture

For the second day it is planned to start with a panel discussion on whether “climate neutrality” is a realistic goal for the agriculture sector, and even if this is a desirable goal given the current focus on efficiency and the risks of trade-offs with biodiversity objectives. The session will also discuss the realistic potential for carbon sequestration in soils, the need for safeguards to ensure environmental integrity, and the right policy approach to ensure that climate action in the agriculture sector contributes at the same time to adaptation, resilience, and biodiversity protection.
After this session, the transition towards more sustainable food systems will be discussed. During this session the panelists will explore what sustainable food systems look like and how to get there. Initiatives such as the organic action plan, sustainable public procurement, and other Farm to Fork (F2F) strategy related initiatives will be central stage.

18 June: The new EU Organic Regulation & Rural development

The last day will start with a panel discusison on how the new Organic Regulation (EU) 2018/848 will be implemented and in which way those technical changes would help to reach the EU objectives of 25% on organic land by 2030. Followed this and before the close statement, it will take place a session on how initiatives such as organic districts (or biodistricts), living labs and farm demonstrations can contribute to the development of rural areas and the success of the Organic Action Plan.

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Bio Eco Actual, Independent European Organic Press
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