Antonio Tavares from Portugal, re-elected as Chairman of Copa-Cogeca Pigmeat Working Party this week, said that the Working Party will work hard to ensure measures are taken to improve the difficult EU pigmeat market situation which has been hit hard by the Russian crisis.
The Working Party welcomed as a positive step the EU Commission move to open a private scheme to temporarily store pigmeat to help ease the difficult market situation in the short term. Nevertheless, the Working Party proposes that the products mostly affected by the Russian ban (fat and lard) should be included in the scheme. In addition this scheme should allow operators to destock during the period of private storage as soon as market conditions are better.
The Working Party also discussed and presented alternative measures to the private storage scheme “It will be paramount to find new market outlets for the produce and remove Sanitary and Phytosanitary barriers and other unnecessary obstacles to trade to prevent prices dropping again when the meat comes out of storage, and encourage promotion”, Mr Tavares insisted. He went on to highlight the need to ensure low-value products that are currently in storage and no longer fit for consumption are removed
He will also lead the Working Party in developing a new common strategy on animal welfare and he will look at ways to enable producers to get a better price or premium for their produce in return for the high welfare standards that they apply. In addition, the Working Party will strive to increase the competitiveness and sustainability of the sector by stepping up research and innovation, especially in the field of resource efficiency, monitoring production costs and big data, livestock precision farming.
He will be supported by Miguel-Angel HIGUERA from Spain and Margaret Aberg from Sweden who were elected as Vice Chairpersons for a two year mandate. They underlined the importance of the EU-Japan trade negotiations, a priority for the EU agri-food chain. It is of utmost importance that EU companies are not put at a competitive disadvantage vis a vis their competitors in the transatlantic trade (TTIP) negotiations.
April, 2015/ Copa-Cogeca Press Release.