Friends of the Earth Europe
Brussels, October 18, 2002 – Friends of the Earth are this week calling upon politicians,supermarkets and consumers to take action for sustainable agriculture, healthy food and local diversity. As part of the Campaign ‘Food and Farming: Time to Choose!’ Friends of the Earth are organising actions all over Europe from 19th October to 26th October calling for a more sustainable food production system. In 111 cities and villages in 12 European countries, actions will take place where people will demand sustainable agriculture and healthy, locally grown food.

Actions will take place in Austria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, France, Greece, Hungary, Netherlands, Poland, Scotland and Spain.

Friends of the Earth will call upon politicians to:
* Reform the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) into a sustainable policy:
(1) reward sustainable agriculture;
(2) make CAP subsidies conditional upon environmental compliance;
(3) support localisation of the food chain;
(4) abolish export subsidies.

The reform proposed by European Commissioner Fischler is a step in the right direction, but it supports points (1) and (2) only to some extent and completely ignores points (3) and (4). CAP reform needs to go much further than proposed in order to solve all the environmental, social and health problems of the current European agricultural and food system.

Friends of the Earth will call upon supermarkets to
* Give priority to sales of products from sustainable farming methods that are free of pesticides, e.g. organic products
* Give priority to locally grown products, in order to support local farmers, reduce food miles and to encourage local agro-biodiversity (more consumer choice)
* Pay farmers a fair price for their produce

Friends of the Earth will call upon consumers to:
* Buy local
* Buy organic
* Eat more fruit and vegetables
* Eat less meat

Friends of the Earth is the largest grassroots network in the world campaigning to protect the environment and to create sustainable societies. Friends of the Earth Europe has member groups in 31 different European countries from Sweden to Spain and from Scotland to Slovakia.

Kees Kodde – Campaign Coordinator
+ 31 (0) 205 507 378

Joanna Dober Sullivan – Campaign Coordinator
+ 32 (0) 2 542 0180 or + 32 (0) 2542 0188

Austria: Iris Strutzmann Tel +43 1812 5730
Cyprus: Loukia Pavlidou Tel +357 53 47 042
Czech Republic: Vojtech Kotecky Tel. +420-5-45214431
Denmark: Bo Normander Tel +45 353 612 12
France: Cedric Cabanne Tel. +33 1 48 51 32 22
Greece: Vangelis Stoyannis Tel +30 10 88 19870/+30 946754296
Hungary: Robert Fidrich Tel +36 1 21 67 297
Netherlands: Nicole Bakker Tel + 31 205 507 300
Poland: Ewa Hadjuk Tel + 48 12 423 20 47
Scotland: Dan Barlow + 44 131 554 9977
Spain: Hector Gravina Tel + 34 933 19 50 22 +34 913 069 900
UK: Pete Riley Tel + 44 113 389 99 55


Austria (Global 2000, FoE Austria)
* Oct 25/26: an info stall in Vienna to inform citizens on the impacts of the CAP.
* Action on CAP reform
* publication of results of pesticide tests on food
Iris Strutzmann Tel +43 1812 5730

Cyprus (FoE Cyprus)
* Oct 23 press conference in Nicosia with local food and drinks; Presentation on national TV
* Oct 25 Lecture at Cultural Center of Bank of Cyprus in Limassol
* Oct 26 distribution of campaign material to general public at supermarkets
* Oct 23,24 and 25: various radio and TV broadcasts about the campaign
Loukia Pavlidou Tel +357 53 47 042

Czech Republic (Hnuti Duha, FoE Czech Republic)
Public excursions to organic farms in 10 cities and towns
Vojtech Kotecky Tel. +420-5-45214431

Denmark (NOAH, FoE Denmark)
The action in Denmark is called “politics in the refrigerator”.
The actions will be: handing out organic “lunchboxes” in Copenhagen. The Lunchbox contains organic food, a “sales ticket” with “real prices” and handing out campaign materials in Copenhagen and other cities. >A 1000-foods-table will show people the variety of organic food and sustainability. The table will be in Copenhagen the 23rd and some other towns later in the action week.
Bo Normander Tel +45 353 612 12

France (Amis de la Terre, FoE France)
Local groups in 10 regions will be distributing campaign leaflets to the general public at local markets in the regions:
Midi-Pyrénées, Gers, Landes, Moselle, Dunkerque, Hyères, Poitou, Rhône, Ile de Groix, Val d’Oise, Pau and Producteur
Cedric Cabanne Tel. +33 1 48 51 32 22

Greece (Nea Ecologia, FoE Greece)
* Oct 18 press conference In Athens
* Oct 19 press conference in Trikala
Lunch for farmers and journalists
One hour presentation in TV 10 network
* Oct 21/22 Consumer awareness activities
Lecture in Athens
Vangelis Stoyannis Tel +30 10 88 19870/+30 946754296

Hungary (MTVSZ, FoE Hungary)
In Hungary MTVSZ is planning 1 action in Budapest and 5 actions in the countryside. Actions will include : demonstrations at supermarkets, lectures in schools, food festival, information stalls on organic agriculture, quiz, lectures, etc.
* 19 Oct.: Budapest – action at supermarkets
* 21 Oct.: Gyor (Sokoro Foundation) – conference on sustainable agriculture – with taster of organic products
* 22 Oct: Szolnok (NIMFEA)
* 24 Oct: Szeged (CSEMETE) – lectures in schools (organic agriculture)
* 25 October: Ny¡regyh za /or: Nyiregyhaza/ (E-Misszio)
* 26 October: Hajduboszormeny/ (HITVK)
Robert Fidrich Tel +36 1 21 67 297

Netherlands (Milieudefensie, FoE Netherlands)
On Oct 18th, Milieudefensie will present the annual Eco Award, the award for the supermarket that has most organic products.
On Oct 19th, Milieudefensie will launch its new campaign aiming for more organic meat in supermarkets. The slogan is “Organic meat. Because we can’t close our eyes any longer.” Three different supermarkets will be targeted by ‘adbusters’ postcard actions, actions at the shop, info stalls etc.Actions will take place in:
* Oct. 19: Utrecht, Amersfoort, Amsterdam, Weert
* Oct 21: Heemskerk
* Oct 23: Uden, Bunnik
* Oct 26: Rotterdam, Zoetermeer, Oss, Alkmaar
Nicole Bakker Tel + 31 205 507 300

Poland (PKE, FoE Poland)
Oct 19 Gliwice: launch of action week: organic fair for all Silesian citizens.
During the week there will be actions in Nowa Sol, Glogow, Poznan, Mlawa and Bochnia. Mlawa: organic trolley action: trolleys on main shopping street with leaflets and other materials about organic food etc. Local PKE groups Nowa Sol and Glogow will prepare street actions with young volunteers and information campaign with questionnaire for candidates for elections (week before election) Poznan and Bochnia will prepare actions with schools – lectures etc.
All week in Bochnia: information campaign schools all week
Oct 25: eco-fair with local organic farmers.
Ewa Hadjuk Tel + 48 12 423 20 47

Scotland (Friends of the Earth Scotland)
Friends of the Earth Scotland will be present at the largest farmers markets in Scotland next week in Edinburgh on Saturday 19th October and in Glasgow on Saturday 26th October to promote sustainable food and farming. There Friends of the Earth will distribute the ‘How to eat sustainably’ publication and asking people to support Scotland’s Organics Targets Bill which was presented in parliament on 1st October.
Dan Barlow + 44 131 554 9977

Spain (Amigos de la Tierra, FoE Spain)
Activities will take place in 8 different Spanish cities: Sevilla (Andalucía), Eivissa and Mallorca (Baleares), Barcelona and Lleida (Catalunya), Ourense and Vigo (Galicia) and Madrid. Different stands will be set up, focussing on food miles, and on the environment problems of the current food system. These stands will be placed in front of municipal markets, supermarkets or central places. Leaflets and quizes will be distributed and the public can participate in a food miles game.
Hector Gravina Tel + 34 933 19 50 22 +34 913 069 900

United Kingdom (FoE EWNI, England, Wales and Northern Ireland)
During this week and through the autumn FOE EWNI will be highlighting the plight of UK apple growers who struggle to survive in the face of global competition and stringent supermarket demands. FOE EWNI is carrying our surveys of growers and of supermarkets to raise awareness. More than 52 groups are participating in the surveys. FoE will show that growers are finding it harder and harder to compete on world markets and to meet the over-zealous appearance standards demanded by the supermarkets. FoE will expose the lack of shelf space given to UK apples in our supermarkets despite the claims they make about promoting British fruit. FoE will also reveal what apple growers get paid, compared to the price shoppers pay at the supermarket till. It is not surprising that many growers now think that the only way forward is to sell their produce locally and direct to consumers. But until the Government and the Regional Development Agencies see local food as more than a niche market and give it the support it deserves, most growers will have little choice but to carry on trying to compete with their counterparts in Europe, America and even China. During this week FOE EWNI will also launch its ‘GM Free Britain’ campaign encouraging local areas to declare themselves GM free – making the choice for sustainable farming instead of GM technology.
FoE England, Wales & Northern Ireland: Pete Riley Tel +44 113 389 99 55