Poreč Joins Paris, Milan, Vienna in “Organic Cities Network Europe”

Total Croatia News

Poreč is the only Croatian town to be among the founding members of the network.

In early January, the Organic Cities Network Europe was established, in cooperation with the European Commission, the most significant European environmental organisation IFOAM, the United Nations ART initiative, and the largest ecological products fair BIOFACH. Its goal is to provide organic food to the urban population and encourage its cultivation. Poreč is the only Croatian town to be among the founders of the Organic Cities Network Europe, together with Paris, Milan, Nuremberg and Vienna, reports Agrobiz on February 20, 2018.

“The initiative is vital for our town and its inhabitants since the network has been established with the aim of strengthening and expanding ecological production across Europe and developing sustainable food plans. Given that our production of eco-friendly products is still being developed, I believe it is necessary to take advantage of the enormous experience and examples of positive practices that other members have. They are some of the leaders in organic food production in Europe and it is up to us to extract the maximum benefit. The fact that we are members sends a positive message to our producers, as well as to the entire population, that we are ready to support the production of organic food in this area. Poreč is the first town in Croatia in several respects, and we are glad to once again be an example to other towns in the country,” said Deputy Mayor Nadia Štifanić Dobrilović.

The awareness and interest of the local population and tourists towards eco-friendly products is growing daily, and Poreč will support producers who intend to turn towards this type of farming. Ecological products and food are sold at the local market several times a month, and every Thursday during the summer months.

The Agriculture and Tourism Institute has developed the “Domestic Web Market” project which promotes Istrian farmers and encourages the direct sale of their products. At the end of last year, an association “Istrian Web Market” was founded, and its members are farms which want to participate in activities called “Choose Local,” whose aim is to improve the direct sales of Istrian agricultural products and enable contact between farmers and end consumers.

According to Štifanić Dobrilović, the number of family farms in the area continues to grow, with about 500 of them currently being active. “The town wants to take advantage of the potential we have in this area when it comes to organic production, by encouraging ecological agriculture and the consumption f organic food,” she said.

“Our educational institutions prefer to use food made by local producers, whose products and production methods are easier to control. Although the Law on Public Procurement makes this more difficult, regardless of the limitations we aim to procure as many environmentally-produced products as possible. Also, through co-operation with local farms, with institutional support and in accordance with the legal framework, our wish is to introduce as many organic products into institutions as possible – kindergartens, schools, assisted living facilities. We are aware that we are at the beginning of the process and that the adjustment will be a challenge both for small organic producers and for us, but we believe that the ultimate result and the satisfaction of all involved will be a good motive for further development,” concluded the Deputy Mayor.

Translated from Agrobiz (reported by Marta Duić).

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