Here you will find the AGREEN project’s press releases developed by the project partners as well as interesting articles related to the Climate-smart agriculture across the partners’ countries and Europe in general. Please feel free to comment and share.
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Unity in Diversity: some excerpts from the research for a Regional Branding strategy
The AGREEN project refers to a regional brand, which should be a common effort and must be built and agreed upon by all the levels of decision making in partner countries. The main argument for such an endeavor is that the regional resource brand is a tool for place branding. This will be beneficial for the region development and for the preservation of regional traditions and values. AGREEN project proposes a solution to share effort of building a brand under the vault of an unique CSA concept. The pillars of such an effort are:
• increasing of territorial competitiveness, based on criteria of quality, environmental conservation and solidarity, in each of the territories members;
• building of a joint territorial quality Brand, identifying with the same symbol and obtained by the same procedure, for all territories involved in the project.
in both Romania and Bulgaria, in recent years, enhanced interest towards bio, organic and clean/green food production is registered. The consumers are becoming more informed and selective regarding the food they buy and eat. A number of food companies certified by special label (bio, organic or natural) has emerged. Many stores have special isles on which certified foods are sold. Usually they are more expensive than regular foods.
In Bulgaria, at the end of 2016, the total number of organic operators registered in the Ministry of Agriculture and Food was 7,262 – by 1,089 more than in the previous year. In this number, 6,961 are producers, 3 aquaculture producers, 177 organic production processors and 121 traders (importers, exporters, wholesalers and retailers).
In Romania, the young adults are more and more aware of the environmental and climate issues, of their need for healthy living and healthy, clean food and water. Also, in spite of the globalization, marketing studies report a constant and strong drive for regional, traditional products, associated with fair production and sustainability of one’s own region/ country economy. Romania has a strong branding potential in bio and organic food.
AGREEN team found that the story behind a BSB CSA products brand should be built on strong personality and authenticity. Consumers need to become aware of the BSB qualities, pioneering spirit, innovation, sustainable agricultural practices and the unexplored potential of the region.
In Greece the expectations for this brand are that it will inform the consumers that the product they are buying is grown in environmentally friendly ways and supports a sustainable life style. The purchase of such products are expected to strengthen local markets and products, while consumers feel safe about the food they are consuming.
There is a huge potential for adopting a new CSA brand on the Bulgarian market. The consumers are in general eager to know the origin of the products they buy and the methods of production, which aligns perfectly with the CSA core benefits. They are interested in consuming clean, natural products raised or grown locally with proven health benefits. The support of the local producer is another great incentive. The consumers are prioritizing the quality over the price. CSA could be another instrument for quality control and monitoring which they would trust if endorsed by a recognized certifying authority.
DROUGHT – A CHALLENGE FOR THE FARMERS IN DOBROGEA
Constantly, the south and the east of Romania, areas that represent 75% of the arable land of the country, are affected by drought, this phenomenon being transformed from risk into certainty in recent years. Across the country, the loss in production is estimated at over 40%, which means that in the most affected counties in the south of the country, the average loss is over 60%. Dobrogea is one of the regions most affected by climate change.
Within the AGREEN project – Climate-Smart and Green Agriculture – professors and students from the specialization of Agriculture within the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Agricultural Sciences, “OVIDIUS” University of Constanța, visited farmers from Constanța County, who practice intelligent agriculture in relation to the increasing climate change in the Dobrogea area. Farmers are aware of the negative impact of climate change on water resources and are looking to find new solutions for a sustainable agriculture, they continuously adapt the cultivation technologies in order to obtain high-quality yields, as well as the structure of varieties and hybrids to withstand aridity. At the same time, the farmers want to preserve the natural fertility of the soil and as well to minimize the negative effects of soil and water pollution, while respecting the environment.