(Report in 5 parts)
Plenum 2 on September 30, 2014: Future Questions of FOOD Security: Security of Supply and FOOD Safety
The afternoon was dedicated to two high-ranking panels that addressed the future issues “Security of Supply” and “Food Safety”. Gerd Sonnleitner, Honorary President of the German Farmers’ Union (DBV) and COPA, presently also UN Special Ambassador for the International Year of Family Farming, Jindrich Snejdrla, Deputy Minister of Agriculture of the Czech Republic, Zoltan Adam Kovacs, Deputy Secretary of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Hungary, Dieter Brauer of the Federation of German Plant Breeders, and Bernd Homann of Agravis Raiffeisen AG were on the first panel which was chaired by Mrs Sigrun Neuwerth, German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL). “It all starts with sowing” is a quote of the famous Roman writer and philosopher Vergil. And yet, in order to plant the seeds and see them emerge, safeguarded ownership of land, strong and independent farmers’ organisations and cooperatives are needed; where people are starving, there is a lack of elementary rights and good governance in most cases. Security of supply is indeed an issue for East European countries, and even more so on a global scale.
The second panel, chaired by Willi Kampmann, DBV, consisted of Ruve Šank, Head of Department in the Estonian Ministry of Agriculture, Mrs Dilyana Slavova, EESC member from Bulgaria, Mrs Tadeja Kvas Majer, Director General in the Slovenian Ministry of Agriculture and Environment, Axel Aumüller, Board of Nordzucker AG, as well as Prof. Dr. Dr. Andreas Hensel, President of the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment. Today, food safety is a highly emotional societal issue. Along with standards, also levels of control and transparency of origin are markedly higher than in former times, whereas imports often call for criticism. The question of “How safe may food be?”, i.e. which risk is considered acceptable in politics, science and society, has to be looked at and answered again and again.
Impressions over Impressions
Pictures: Anton Blöth (Berlin), Rüdiger Pelikan (Brandenburg), Marion Schenk (Zirndorf)