Experts bet on sustainable agriculture in economic reconstruction after COVID-19

The development of sustainable agriculture, linked to the environment, is the best contribution of this sector to the necessary economic reconstruction launched after the covid-19 crisis, according to several experts this morning in a webinar organized by Sigfito .

The conference, entitled “Post-coronavirus economic recipes: How would agriculture and the environment get us out of the crisis?”, Was presented by Sigfito's CEO, Rocío Pastor, who has been convinced that economic regeneration Spanish goes through “linking the environment to agriculture”.

The deputy director of the Institute of Economy, Geography and Demography of IEGD-CSIC, Tomás García Azcárate, has assured that "there is no dichotomy between economy and ecology", and that "agriculture must be sustainable from the economic, social and environmental point of view".

Agriculture, a sector with a future

He stated that "the covid-19 crisis has shown that, despite logistical problems and the initial panic of consumers, the food chain has not been broken, it has only been strained", and that "agriculture is a sector that promises and has a future ”, now with more demand for healthy food.

However, "he added," the agricultural growth model that has been followed up to now is stagnant "and, now, after the sector's good response to the pandemic," we must take advantage to move from a quantitative development path to another one qualitative".

García Azcárate has considered that the strategic plan that Spain is finalizing for the implementation of the next common agricultural policy (CAP) can become "a powerful instrument for sustainability".

He explained that it is also necessary to advance in other tasks still pending to improve the structure of the agricultural sector and the operation of the food chain law, to recover direct sales of local food or increase responsibility in the management of agricultural waste.

The technical secretary of the Official College of Agricultural Engineers of Levante (Coial), José Carbonell, has defended "the thrust of the circular economy in agriculture" and an improvement in selective collection and in the organic waste recovery so that "the oil, for example, does not end up in a sink".

It has recognized that the environment has been part of Spanish legislation since the 80s, and that now it is time for all those regulations that evaluate the environmental impacts "are more coordinated so that it is a transferable filter" at a time when "Spain needs a quick reconstruction".

In his opinion, the necessary development of sustainable agriculture will increasingly go hand in hand with new technologies and artificial intelligence.

Circular economy

The head of the Soil Decontamination and Waste Management Area of ​​the Madrid institute Imidra, Carmen Lobo, has stated several lines of research in which her department works to apply urban and industrial waste to agricultural soils.

For Lobo, Europe aims to achieve a “society that is efficient in the use of resources”, and “to move from a linear to a circular economy”.

He was pleased that, just as there is an awareness of water scarcity, European legislation is already talking about the importance of recovering soils and that they are finally considered to be a living system on which food production depends on. a planet with a growing population.

The panel of experts has ended with the intervention of Antonio Conde, a farmer graduated in Agri-Food Engineering and member of the Spanish Association of Conservation Agriculture who has supported the existence of a greater traceability of the product, more boost from short distribution channels and fair prices.

It has also bet on the bioeconomy, "Since in the future, production and the environment must go hand in hand" and for precision agriculture with the application of new technologies.

Green EFE

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