The Minister of Agriculture, Didier Guillaume, is launching an “agri-bashing observatory” to identify malicious acts against farmers while providing for the establishment of zones where phytosanitary treatments will be prohibited. “In the department of Drôme where I was on Friday, an observatory against agri-bashing was installed because you really have to explain yourself,” the minister said on CNews on Monday April 29th.
“A person told me + I was in my field on my tractor and someone came to attack me verbally saying farmer-polluter. We cannot stay like that”, underlined the minister, declaring himself “worried” verbal assaults which are increasing against farmers at work. “It really worries me a lot,” he added.
The minister indicated that “charters” providing for “non-treatment” zones would be put in place at the same time, to facilitate the cohabitation of farmers in an inhabited area, “along an Ephad, a retirement home or of a school “, in consultation with” the mayor, associations, farmers “. “Already when there is wind, it is forbidden to treat. The agroecological transition, it is irreversible,” he added.
“It’s all agriculture that must be converted”
Asked about the current international meeting in Paris on the decline in biodiversity in the world, the Minister recalled that France was going to be “the first country in Europe” to sharply reduce the use of pesticides and phytosanitary products by 2025 . “It is not only organic, it is all agriculture that must be converted, in reasoned agriculture, in agriculture which allows to use less glyphosate, less phytosanitary products”, he said. he says.
On April 10, the minister recalled France’s objectives in this area: “to reduce the use of plant protection products by 25% in 2020 and by 50% in 2025, and the exit of glyphosate by the end of 2020 for the main uses for which alternatives exist, and by the end of 2022 for all uses “.
To do without glyphosate, “all sectors are moving forward”, he noted on Friday in an interview with the daily Le Dauphiné, “if in certain sectors this is not possible on January 1, 2021, then we will give a small delay of more, “he conceded.
Despite two successive plans to reduce pesticides in agriculture since 2007 (Ecophyto), France has removed many molecules dangerous to human health but has hardly reduced the volumes of phytosanitary products used, intended to maintain agricultural yields and competitiveness of the agri-food sector in the face of global competition.