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#Endocrine disruptors: adoption of scientific criteria for #biocides

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Following the endorsement by Member States, on 4 July, of the scientific criteria to identify endocrine disruptors in the field of pesticides or plant protection products  the European Commission adopted today  the scientific criteria for biocides. This will allow to fully align the criteria in both legislations, as the objective is to have the same criteria applicable in both sectors.

The adopted text will be sent to the Parliament and the Council for a scrutiny period of two-months. As for the criteria for pesticides, the criteria adopted today also specify that the identification of an endocrine disruptor should be carried out by taking into account all relevant scientific evidence including animal, in-vitro or in-silico studies, and by using a 'weight of evidence'-based approach.

It is important to note that the criteria in the area of pesticides and biocides will apply also to substances for which assessment or re-evaluations are already ongoing. For more information see here.

Agriculture

Commission organizes first Farm to Fork 2020 conference 

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On 15 October European Green Deal Executive Vice President Frans Timmermans, together with  Health and Food Safety Commissioner Stella Kyriakides and Agriculture Commissioner Janusz Wojciechowski opened the Farm to Fork 2020 conference - Building sustainable food systems together. The virtual conference will also take place today (16 October), it being World Food Day. This conference is the first in what will be an annual gathering of European stakeholders willing to engage and help shape the EU's path towards sustainable food systems.

More than 1,000 stakeholders across the food value chain, public authorities, international and civil society organizations, as well as members of the public have registered to join the debate and contribute to the implementation of the Farm to Fork Strategy, adopted earlier this year. At the heart of the European Green Deal, the strategy aims at a fair, healthy and environmentally friendly food system. The event will also provide a forum for discussion on the challenges and opportunities linked to the transition to sustainable food systems, as well as on possible further areas of intervention The whole event is accessible via web streaming.

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Agriculture

Commission publishes public opinion survey on EU food and farming

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Three out of four Europeans are aware of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and consider all citizens benefit from it, according to the latest EU-wide Eurobarometer survey of public opinion about agriculture and the CAP, published today by the European Commission. The survey shows that more EU citizens are aware of the CAP (73% today, six percentage points more than in 2017) and believe that the CAP benefits all citizens, not only farmers (76% today, 15 percentage points more than in 2017).

Furthermore, citizens' views on what the main objectives of the CAP should be remain similar to the findings of the 2017 survey. Most believe that providing safe, healthy food of high quality should be the main objective, representing the view of 62% of respondents, same as in 2017. An increased number of Europeans think that the EU is fulfilling its role regarding the key objectives of the CAP. In comparison with 2017, all areas including food security, sustainability, safe and quality food increased by at least five percentage points.

More citizens are now aware of the organic farming logo, covering 56% of respondents (up 29 percentage points compared to 2017). Even though a growing share of citizens believe that agriculture is one of the major causes of climate change (from 29% in 2010 to 42% in 2020), the majority of citizens believe that agriculture has already made a major contribution to fighting climate change, with 55% holding this view, up from 46% in 2010. The survey was conducted from August to September 2020, including more than 27,200 respondents in 27 member states. The full report of the EU-survey will be published later in November. More information is available online.

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Agriculture

Publication of latest agri-food trade figures: Slight increase in EU27 agri-food trade despite Coronavirus and Brexit challenges

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The latest monthly agri-food trade report shows that between January and May 2020, the total value of EU-27 agri-food exports rose by 2% compared to the same period in 2019, reaching €75.8 billion, while the value of imports increased to €52.7bn (a rise of nearly 1%).

However the monthly values of EU-27 exports and imports in May 2020 decreased by 7.5% and 4.5% respectively below the level of the previous month. The EU enjoyed an agri-food trade surplus of €23.1 billion during this period, an increase of 5% compared to the corresponding months of 2019. The growth of EU exports was driven by exceptionally high sales of pig meat to China and of cereals to the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

The value of EU exports to China rose by €1.93 billion during this period. In addition to pig meat, the other EU agri-food products in high demand from China were wheat, offal meat, and infant food. Strong demand for EU barley and wheat led to increases in exports to the MENA region. The total value of EU agri-food exports to the UK fell by €899 million, while, imports from the UK dropped by €807m. Declines were also noted in the value of the EU's imports from the USA as well as EU export values to the USA.

The full report is available online and more information on agri-trade policy is available here.

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