Organic Agriculture (AE) is mentioned explicitly in one of the 6 main items of the budget that the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAPA) has submitted to Parliament in 2008, specifically in the section of industry competitiveness food and food quality. Although this item is intended total of € 102.28 million, an increase of 18.8% for the year 2007, organic agriculture is intended within a much smaller amount of shares to support agribusiness and technological plans sectoral promotion and quality. The 63.68% of the funds requested would be sent to the promotion of agricultural industrialization.
Although the other 5 major lines of measures that appear in MAPA can also mean support for AE, SEAE believes in a first assessment of the budget devoted to the MAPA, AE remains rather limited in these budgets, considering the many benefits of organic agriculture to society. In any case, do not reflect its importance and potential, or define it to be the bet of the future for agriculture by the MAPA. At the level of MAPA, it is still considered a more productive sector and not as the engine for sustainable rural development.
According to various studies supporting organic agriculture and reducing the negative impact on natural resources, by not using synthetic chemical fertilizers or pesticides that have the potential to contaminate soil and water (surface and groundwater), provide higher quality foods, improved biodiversity, soil fertility and organic matter content, reduce fossil energy use, helping to mitigate climate change. Also generate more jobs and attract more and more young people to rural and farming. All these environmental, social and food that makes this farming efforts not currently recognized by the market price at harvest. They should be compensated by other mechanisms, such as state budgets.
5 Other major budget items:
- Improving agricultural structures and production systems are cover of € 413.44 million. This group includes three programs cost competitiveness and quality of agricultural production, livestock production and regulation of agricultural markets. As main courses of action are the technological innovation (Renove) with € 23.33 million (increase of 10.4%) and health of agricultural and livestock production, which represents 128, € 82 million.
- Rural Development Policy: have a special role through the Law of Sustainable Rural Development. There are three spending programs: Management of water resources for irrigation, rural development and Sustainable Rural Development Program. They grouped the amount of € 740.33 million, including € 87.78 million for Seiasas.
- Program Management of water resources for irrigation: reach into the financial and real investment of € 217.06 million (increase of 8.22%). The Rural Development provides € 423.28 million (increase of 5.4 €) and include measures in infrastructure, modernization of farms and for young, diversification and training programs Leader, National Rural Network; areas; AE, among others.
- Policy of Agricultural Insurance: The Annual Plan for 2008 will be a budget of € 280.26 million (increase of about 6.3 € 2007).
- New technologies: it includes an allocation of credits for the Plan and Information Sector Convergence Plan for the Information Society, which is € 15.73 million, an increase of 17%
SEAE demand a greater budget allocation in 2008 to support the development of agriculture and organic food, considering that it helps to mitigate climate change, as noted in several studies and reports on the Program Grow Your Weather that this entity is developing with a grant from the Ministry of Environment.
More information: www.agroecologia.net