Agriculture

A photograph made available on 04 October 2013 shows the river Tiputini as it passes by the northern border of Yasuni National Park in Ecuador, 16 May 2007. The Ecuadoran Congress approved on 03 October 2013 new drilling for oil development and accompanying roads in the remote northeast section of Yasuni National Park, a 900,000 hectare Amazon forest which is considered one of the most biodiverse areas in the world.

EU-Mercosur deal criticised as an environmental disaster

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On its way to ratification by national parliaments, the recently concluded EU-Mercosur trade deal has come under intensive criticism for its perceived negative effects on the environment. The Mercosur deal envisages the import of 100,000...

All the world is a stage and Zelensky has yet to play his biggest...

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Actors have their exits and their entrances, and one man in his time plays many parts. Volodymyr Zelensky, a professional actor, was propelled into the Ukrainian presidency winning 73% of the votes. During his campaign, he...

EU’s agriculture commissioner believes ‘common sense might prevail’ over Brexit

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Britain's agriculture commissioner, Phil Hogan, said he remains hopeful that common sense might prevail in relation Brexit, but that he had no answers to the question of the  Irish border. "Despite the madness of Brexit, I...

Spain leads the way with programme to reverse desertification

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As desert-like conditions have begun to take over fertile regions of Almeria, Granada and Murcia in southern Spain, an eco-business movement called Alvelal is attempting to reverse the phenomenon through a holistic approach to environmental...

UK announces ‘protectionist measures’ for its agriculture

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Britain will impose tariffs as well as quotas and will introduce subsidies to support its farmers in the event of a no-deal Brexit, according to the UK’s environment secretary Michael Gove. Addressing the National Farmers’ Union...

Brussels and Washington spar over opening of EU’s Single Market to US agriculture

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Formal EU-US trade talks begin in February, but the two trade delegations met on January 16 to firm up the bloc’s parameters for talks as Brussels is focused on taking agriculture off the negotiating agenda. Opening...

Uniting Africa for power

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African countries are increasingly coming together. A landmark free-trade agreement was concluded earlier this year. East Africa has made great progress on the free movement of people. And a commitment to a single market...

The Netherlands clears the way for agricultural genetic modification

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The Netherlands' Agriculture Minister Carola Schouten says she is open to the possibility of using genetically modified seeds in some cases for agricultural purposes, Dutch daily Volkskrant reported. Schouten wants to encourage both technical and laboratory experimentation...

Suicide epidemic plagues French farmers

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For over a decade,  France has been plagued by a suicide epidemic among French farmers as, according to broadcaster France 24, that one farmer commits suicide every two days, with the majority of cases being recorded in Brittany...

No more EU fruit pickers for the UK

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Britain's farmers will no longer have privileged access to cheap low-skilled workers from the EU after Brexit, according to the chair of the UK's Migration Advisory Committee. In a statement to the BBC, the chair...

Despite tensions over trade, US is now Europe’s main supplier of soya beans

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Trade relations between the EU and US have been mired in bitter disputes over President Donald J. Trump's decision to slap sharp protectionist tariffs on key European exports - including steel and aluminium - which...

With a landmark Caspian agreement in place, key legal issues remain for neighbouring littoral...

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After 26 years of negotiations and countless high-level summits, a Convention on the Caspian Sea was finally signed in the Kazakh city of Aktau on August 12 in a move that was immediately hailed...

European Commission proposes formal talks with US on beef market

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The European Commission has proposed opening formal talks with the United States in order to address President Donald J. Trump’s repeated accusations that American farmers are not getting a fair share of the EU’s beef market. The EU...

Commission presents additional measures to support farmers

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The European Commission has presented a package of new measures aimed at increasing the availability of forage resources for livestock, one of the main challenges facing farmers following a recent drought across the Continent. This package complements...

Making Migration Safe for Climate Nexus

Humanity is on the move. We are living in an era of unprecedented mobility of ideas, money, and, increasingly, people. The sheer size of the human population, combined with how we consume resources, is profoundly...

If Trump Ruled Venice

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Marco Polo, the famous thirteenth-century Venetian merchant, was one of the first Europeans to trade with China. Now imagine that, after a while, the Venetian state became concerned that Polo was purchasing too many...

German, Nordic and Baltic states move to help farmers with heatwave crisis

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German, Swedish, Finnish, Lithuanian and Danish farmers are facing a drought and their governments are mulling special aid packages. The European Commission pledged it own support on Tuesday, moving to allow the limited use of...

We Need a Food Revolution

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LONDON – In 1984, I gathered the most successful musicians of the time to form a “supergroup” called Band Aid to raise money for famine relief in Ethiopia. The next year, an even larger...

Irish farmers call for shift of focus from borders to trade

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When it comes to Brexit negotiations, Irish farmers are more concerned about trade than the border issue, the head of the Irish Creamery Milk Suppliers Association (ICMSA) told the Irish Times on Monday. The President...

Dutch eggs embroiled in a second insecticide contamination case within a year

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Six German states will pull 73,000 eggs imported from an organic farm in the Netherlands and delivered between the 17 of May and June 4. The eggs are believed to be contaminated by an insecticide...

EU bans bee killing nicotinoids

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EU countries voted on Friday for a near-total ban on insecticides blamed for killing off bee populations. The ban on three neonicotinoid pesticides was approved by the EU 28 following the recommendation of the European...

EU Commission steps up effort to tackle unfair food trade practices

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The European Commission presented a plan to help small-scale food producers that will ensure that all food sales contracts are honoured while tackling several types of unfair supply and distribution practices. “Today’s proposal is fundamentally about...

Council of Europe experts call for action against human trafficking of migrants

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The trafficking of labour migrants is on the rise across Europe, even surpassing sexual exploitation, according to a report published by the Council of Europe (CoE). European officials have regularly underestimated the true scale of the...

European Parliament checks Ukraine’s spending habits

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The European Union’s policy of supporting poorer regions and member states with its subsidies has, once again, found itself embroiled in controversy over how Ukraine is spending its share of funds in the agricultural sector. The...

Spain and Mexico feud over Manchego cheese

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The usually warm relations between Spain and Mexico have soured in recent days as the two Hispanophone nations are locked in a feud over the naming rights of one of Spain's most iconic food products...

The curious case of Copper Sulphate

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The role of chemicals in agriculture is high on the EU policy agenda these days. A vocal organic lobby claims that outlawing synthetic pesticides is crucial for public health. On the other hand, farmers...

Russia could leave WTO over EU pork dispute

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The deputy president of Russia’s Economic Council, Sergei Kalashnikov, said Moscow could leave the World Trade Organization (WTO) amid a dispute on limiting pork imports from the European Union. Russia said on Monday it would contest...

EU moves towards Common Agricultural Policy reform

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The European Union is taking steps towards a fundamental overhaul of its Common Agricultural Policy,  that is, a policy that accounts for over 40% of its annual budget and is mostly devoted to direct...

Brazil bans fish exports to EU

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Brazil announced a temporary ban on fish exports to the European Union. It said this is a preventative measure following an EU food safety regulations audit that revealed discrepancies. According to Brazil’s agriculture ministry, the...

Future of food, farming in EU

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To ensure the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) delivers real results in supporting farmers and leads the sustainable development of EU agriculture, the European Commission has planted simpler rules and more flexibility. This is the key...

EU finally grants last-minute, five-year license to glyphosate

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Controversial herbicide glyphosate licensed for five more years in EU, despite France's opposition, according to an EU official. “Habemus glyphosate” say Brussels as Monday’s appeal committee meeting, maybe the last chance for the bloc to...

EU’s last chance to agree on glyphosate license renewal

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Monday may be the EU member states’ last chance to agree on the controversial herbicide’s fate, glyphosate. 27 November is maybe the last chance for the European Commission to persuade the EU member states to extend...

‘Brexit will be worse than a nightmare for animals’

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Britain’s bill on exiting the European Union omits an important article for animal welfare. There is no mention of Article 13 of the 2009 Lisbon Treaty. This article recognises that animals are sentient beings and...

European Parliament votes for a ban on glyphosate by 2022

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The European Parliament approved a resolution to fully ban glyphosates by 2022 on Tuesday. Glyphosate is the active agent of Monsanto’s weed killer Roundup. On Wednesday, the European Commission postponed taking a binding agreement on...

Week of pressure on EU’s institutions to ban Glyphosate

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As calls to ban the famous herbicide and crop desiccant are gaining steam in Europe, Brussels enters ‘listening mode’ ahead of another vote later this week. Activists from the Stop Glyphosate European Citizens’ Initiative met...

EU Commission urges UK to work on common approach to WTO agricultural quotas

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As US president Donald Trump has teamed up with Brazil, Argentina, Canada, New Zealand, Uruguay and Thailand, the UK’s proposed import arrangements after Brexit are at stake, harming not only London but Brussels. It seems...

The EU ends sugar subsidies

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For the first time in over half a century, the European Union abolished minimum prices for sugar on Sunday, October 1, DW reports. Consumers will be paying lower prices for the key commodity. That could...