European agri co-ops have launched a campaign to showcase the sector’s role in meeting the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
Coopa-Cogeca, the united voice of European farmers and agri co-ops will be featuring almost 100 success stories from across Europe on their new platform – www.17reasons2coop.eu. The sector will also be using the hashtag #17Reasons2Coop on social media to highlight the contribution of agri-food and forestry as a new political cycle is starting in Brussels.
Launched on 6 July 2019 to coincide with the International Day of Co-operatives, the campaign aims to ensure the role of agri co-ops is fully valued in the context of debates on the future and sustainability of Europe’s agri-food chain.
Commenting on the campaign, Cogeca president Thomas Magnusson said: “Over the past years, I noticed in my different exchanges with EU stakeholders that examples are better than long speeches. In a time of permanent agri bashing, it is time to show that our rural areas are creative and resilient and this is thanks to agri co-operatives. We benefit our farmer owners, we champion our employees, we work to understand and satisfy our customers, consumers and society. We innovate, invest and work on a long-term sustainable projects. ”
EU Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan welcomed the initiative and described agri-co-operatives as “successful businesses that unite farmers around common economic, social and environmental goals”.
Mr Hogan send a video message to Copa-Cogeca to congratulate the sector on the 2019 International Day of Co-operatives.
He said: “This wonderful occasion is an important opportunity to highlight how European agri co-operatives benefit farmers, our rural economies and indeed our consumers.
The Commissioner believes co-ops are the backbone of rural areas that help to create and sustain quality employment and viable rural communities.
He added: “They support our farmers in improving their production and position in the food supply chain, ensuring fair incomes and long-term investments”.
MEP Paolo De Castro, who was recently reelected as member of the Agriculture Committee, also praised agricultural co-operatives. “It is essential to recognise the role of agri co-operatives that guarantee incomes to our farmers while being protagonist in supporting the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals,” he said.