European Commission Announces Adoption of Biodiversity and Farm to Fork Strategies
On May 20, 2020 the European Commission announced its adoption of the Biodiversity Strategy and a Farm to Fork Strategy. As core parts of the European Green New Deal, the initiatives are intended to promote a sustainable and competitive European economy.
Specifically, the Biodiversity Strategy aims to address biodiversity loss due to the unsustainable use of land and sea, overexploitation of natural resources, pollution and invasive species. The Farm to Fork Strategy aims to transition the EU food system into a sustainable system that that will safeguard food security, while ensuring access to healthy diets and reducing the environmental footprint of the EU food system. Of particular interest, the Farm to Fork Strategy proposes measures to ensure that healthy food options are the easiest for EU citizens to select and may include front-of-pack labeling (for salt, sugar and/or fat) and potentially setting maximum permitted levels for certain nutrients.
The announcement notes that the COVID-19 crisis has demonstrated the vulnerability caused by increasing biodiversity loss and the importance of a well-functioning food system. The strategies in part aim to strengthen the EU’s resilience to future pandemics and climate threats. The Commission has asked the European Parliament and the Council to endorse the strategies and commitments, and has encouraged citizens and stakeholders to participate in the public debate.