Brussels, 31 March 2004
OPINION of the European Economic and Social Committee on the Proposal for a Council Regulation establishing a Community programme on the conservation, characterisation, collection and utilisation of genetic resources in agriculture COM(2003) 817 final -2003/0321 (CNS)
Full text of Opinion in MS Word file on ESC website
The Committee also welcomes the close attention which the programme pays to the work of NGOs.
In its Opinion of 25 April 2002 the Committee stated that " in parallel with this scientific approach there is the no less important need to ensure that the diversity of genetic resources continues to be used in farming by promoting environmentally sound practices such as diversity in crop rotation under the second pillar of the CAP". Comparable measures should be carried out to maintain the use of rare farm animal breeds. Protecting through consumption can be an important part of a new, consciously diverse European food culture.
The EESC therefore emphasises that the opportunities offered by the second pillar of the CAP for the conservation and use of genetic resources should be more clearly pinpointed and exploited.
In its proposal for a regulation the Commission already to a large extent takes account of the proposals of the Member States, the Parliament and the EESC on the withdrawn proposal of 22Â November 2001. The EESC welcomes the new proposal for a regulation and expects the programme to be rapidly adopted, implemented, evaluated and continued.