Assembly of European Horticultural Regions


AREFLH recent activities

The AREFLH was present at several events of the agricultural sector last November. 

EU CAP Network : Forum for good practice in the agri-food chain

10 November 2022 

Luca Contrino, AREFLH EU Policy Officer, participated in the second edition of the "Forum of Good Practices in the Agri-Food Chain" of the EU CAP Network.

The presentations of the event focused on several themes related to sustainability in the agri-food chain, such as support to farmers, the role of market transparency in improving agri-food sustainability, and possible collective actions.


Four discussion groups were organised, each with a different perspective, to explore the theme of improving sustainability standards through cooperation:

  1. The producer organisation's point of view, presented by Marisa Ruiz from the OP El Ciruelo (Spain)
  1. The innovators' point of view presented by Evgeny Pesotsky, from NTT DATA
  1. The retailer's perspective, presented by Tiina Engelmark, Dole Nordic (Sweden)
  1. Member States' views, presented by Gerber van Vliet, Ministry of Agriculture, Luxembourg

Luca Contrino participated in the first, second and fourth focus groups.

The full agenda of the event and speakers is available from this link.


ICE Agency"Mediterranean Food - Conviviality Sustainability Innovation"

16 November 2022

AREFLH participated in the event "Mediterranean Food - Conviviality Sustainability Innovation" which took place at the European Parliament.

The conference was organised by the Brussels office of the Italian Foreign Trade Agency (ICE) and held in the framework of the Italian Cuisine in the World Week.

The conference tackled the many virtues of the Mediterranean diet, both in terms of health and environmental sustainability. The need to promote the sustainability aspect was also discussed, and how to better protect the components of the Mediterranean diet in the face of competition from processed food products and the typical diet from North America, highly based on meat. 

Donato Bendicenti, journalist at RAI, the Italian national radio and television station, moderated the panel, which was composed of :

  • Roberto Capone, Director of CIHEAM (Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Bari)
  • Paolo De Castro, Partito Democratico MEP 
  • Nicola Procaccini, Fratelli d'Italia MEP
  • Andreas Schwab MEP of the Christlich Demokratische Union (Germany)

MEP Camilla Laureti closed the conference.

For more information, see the ICEpress release


Murcia Region/Committee of the Regions - Innovation to reduce soil pollution 

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21 November 2022

Luca Contrino also participated in the conference organised by the Region of Murcia on "Innovations to reduce and remedy agricultural soil pollution" which took place at the Committee of the European Regions on 21 November.

This event was an opportunity to learn more about the European mission "A Pact for Healthy Soils in Europe", which is part of the Commission's Soil Strategy, in particular through a presentation by Annette Schneegans of DG AGRI.

Three projects dedicated to agricultural soil improvement were then presented:


1- The LIFE AgRemSo3il project, which works on agricultural land in the Murcia region. It aims to remediate soils polluted by pesticide residues through ozonation techniques (using light radiation, hydroxyl radicals that attack and destroy all organic molecules from CO2, H2O and mineral salts). Solarisation is also one of these sanitation techniques, by placing a transparent plastic on the farm's soil during the summer months, when the temperature and light radiation are more intense.


2- The DiverFarming project, also based in the Murcia region. This focuses on polyculture as a technique to ensure better soil quality, greater pollinator presence and more effective carbon sequestration on farms.


3- Finally, the last Horizon project presented, Best4Soil, aims to establish a community to share good practices to be applied to crops to improve soil health. The project focuses on compost, green manures, anaerobic disinfestation, and bio-solarisation.


Participation in these events is an opportunity for AREFLH to refine its knowledge of the agricultural sector, initiatives and institutional policies, and to present them to its members.


Learn more about AREFLH's missions

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