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Issue n°15 October 2015


GREEN INSIGHT INTO EU FOOD POLICY

Organic farming rules: MEPs vote to boost sustainability and credibility of organic farming

GMOs: A serious reform of the authorisation procedure is urgently needed

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

The noose is tightening around Endocrine disruptors: time for the European Commission to act!

European attempts to say no to Sulfoxaflor, another systemic insecticide just authorised by the Commission (press release by BeeLife)

JOIN THE FOOD REVOLUTION: THE STORY OF THE MONTH

Every month food actors who joined the 'Join the Food Revolution' network share their story, showing the way to take back control over your plate –

WHAT'S ON THE PLATE?

Upcoming Events

GREEN INSIGHT INTO EU FOOD POLICY

Organic farming rules:MEPs vote to boost sustainability and credibility of organic farming

On 13th October, the European Parliament's agriculture committee voted on draft new EU rules on organic farming. The vote sets out parliament's position and paves the way for trilogue negotiations with EU governments, with a view to finalising the legislation, if possible by the end of this year.

Greens MEPs pushed for the most important elements of the draft regulation which were voted. This includes a strict, process-based controls regime to tackle food fraud. Greens MEPs also supported the introduction of precautionary measures to avoid contamination of organic products with unauthorised substances, like pesticides. The vote also ensures that mixed farms, with organic and conventional sections, foresee clearly distinct separation of crops and animals. On imported products, alongside the majority of MEPs, Greens/EFA members agreed that they should all comply with tough EU rules.

Greens now hope the Council will take on board European Parliament's call for a dynamic and innovative development of the organic sector.

See details of our Green demands for a dynamic and innovative development of the organic sector

GMOs: Authorisation procedure needs urgent overhaul

While MEPs have just voted against the European Commission's proposal to allow Member states to opt-out of EU authorisations for GM food and feed, a new scandal has been revealed. 6 genetically modified maize varieties that were authorised for import into the EU carry genetic modifications that were not included in the assessment when the crops were authorised. These revelations once again raise the fact that the Commission should urgently come forward with a consistent proposal to address the weaknesses of the authorisation system.

Read our press releases:

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

The noose is tightening around Endocrine disruptors: time for the European Commission to act!

Two recent news items reveal how stubbornly lobbyists ignore the negative impact of EDs - present in food products and many other daily use items - on our health and how weak EU institutions are in tackling the problem

On 23rd September, the Endocrine Society published the executive summary of its second Scientific Statement on environmental endocrine disrupting chemicals. This summary already provides a synthesis of the key points of the complete statement which should be published later this month. The statement examines emerging evidence linking endocrine-disrupting chemical (EDC) exposure to health problems. EDCs mimic, block or otherwise interfere with the body’s natural hormones. The chemicals, which include bisphenol A (BPA), phthalates, pesticides, and industrial chemicals, have been linked to infertility, birth defects and other disorders.

Last but not least, Stéphane Horel, freelance journalist and documentary maker, just released her new book, Intoxication revealing how industrial lobbies managed to pressure the European Commission to delay progress on the regulation on endocrine disruptors.

Beyond the precautionary principle, the scientific evidence demand immediate action, while the transparency of the European Commission is dangerously compromised. What could possibly justify this time-wasting before effective action to start reviewing the European legislation on EDs?

European attempts to say no to Sulfoxaflor, another systemic insecticide just authorised by the Commission (press release by BeeLife)

On the 27 July 2015, the EU Commission and EU Member States agreed to authorise the release of a new bee-killing insecticide, Sulfoxaflor, onto the market, despite warnings from scientists.

The American Court of Justice recently revoked the EPA's authorization of Sulfoxaflor in the USA, because the EPA had failed to properly assess the risks which Sulfoxaflor posed for bees and beneficial insects. In recent days, the European Parliament began to debate its own unjustifiable authorization of Sulfoxaflor, with a vote being held on 13th October.

JOIN THE FOOD REVOLUTION: THE STORY OF THE MONTH

Lieve and her offer creative gardening and cooking classes to helps kids but also adults to escape from their daily activities. Here her mantra: ' "The best medicine for your health is the silence of nature. Nature helps you relax when under stress and gives you protection from too many stimuli from the outside." Get to know more about Lieve and Join the Food Revolution yourself!

WHAT'S ON THE PLATE?

16/10: World Food Day: take part to the TwitterChat with Euractiv

14-27/10: Alimenterre Festival, Belgium

21/10: Climate change Urban Food initiative #1: web conference organised by UNEP, the Nicolas Hulot Foundation and the International Urban Food Network

22/10: Conference Research for Transition, organised by MEPs Bart Staes, José Bové and Martin Häusling

18/11: Conference Why Soil Matters? - A European perspective, organised by the Greens/EFA group, European Parliament, Brussels.

At 18.30, a movie screening on land grabbing, organised by MEPs Martin Häusling and Barbara Lochbiler will echo issues rose at the conference


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