Final Case Study on Cross Measures

rural Sonoma

rural Sonoma (Photo credit: ah zut)

The new Irish NRN website has some useful case studies including examples of projects funds from multiple RDP measures

National Rural Network Document

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Os Tilos tendrá desde junio un mercado semanal de cultivos de proximidad

El Concello de Teo ha cerrado el proyecto para poner en marcha en la plaza de Os Tilos un mercado semanal de productos agrícolas de proximidad, una iniciativa ya desvelada por el edil teense de Comercio de Teo, Anxo Rey, durante su comparecencia del último pleno.
El mercado funcionará en colaboración con el Sindicato Labrego Galego, siglas que ya organizaron en el municipio charlas informativas sobre agricultura ecológica y que hoy se retoman con una sesión divulgativa en Calo con un título que resume la finalidad del proyecto: «O mercado local como alternativa de futuro. A importancia dunha alimentación local e de temporada». La siguiente charla será el día 15 en Recesende. Os Tilos el día 24 y Cacheiras el 31 completan el calendario informativo.
El primer mercado será el 9 de junio en la plaza del centro comercial de Os Tilos con un mínimo de diez puntos de venta, de los que al menos la mitad corresponderán a productores de Teo, mientras que el resto serán del entorno compostelano.

Fuente y más información: La Voz de Galicia

Distance, land, and proximity: economic analysis and the evolution of cities

G Duranton, the author, attempts to provide a synthesis of the long-run evolution of cities by taking an economic perspective. He defends the idea that urban growth for preindustrial cities has been limited by the tyranny of distance. Then he argues that technological progress, by fostering mobility, has reinforced economies of agglomeration and thus allowed for larger cities. This has led to the development of industrial cities and the dominance of the tyranny of distance. Nowadays, however, technological progress in communications and telecommunications seems to be challenging the rationale for agglomeration in cities as more and more economic interactions can be realized at arm’s length. Increasing mobility may have turned into a threat for cities, hence the prediction about the demise of cities. Nonetheless, it is argued that the `tyranny of proximity’ may provide a strong glue to keep postindustrial cities together.
Should you be interested in the book, PLEASE VISIT IDEAS

What is a breakfast club?

A spoon containing breakfast cereal flakes, pa...

A spoon containing breakfast cereal flakes, part of a strawberry, and milk is held in midair against a blue background. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

School breakfast clubs serve food to children who arrive early at school, before formal lessons begin. The way in which the clubs operate depends on the individual circumstances of the school. However, many schools work closely with their school caterer or others to arrange an informal breakfast in a classroom serving fruit, toast, breakfast cereal and drinks.
Breakfast clubs have been operating in the UK for several years and the emphasis of different clubs varies considerably. For example, some breakfast clubs have objectives of integrating study or welfare support, some include play activities, while others focus on providing breakfast and a time for informal interaction between children and school staff, sometimes also involving parents.
A recent study of breakfast clubs summarises four main benefits :
•Improving health and nutrition
•Improving children’s education
•Meeting children’s social needs
•Improving and supporting parent and family life.
A breakfast club involves pupils, school staff, parents and the wider community. It aims to improve the health and well-being of children, as well as the staff and volunteers involved. A breakfast club also underpins the goals of a health promoting school.

For more info and a toolkit, please visit Food Vision

Manchester Food Futures

A diet rich in soy and whey protein, found in ...

A diet rich in soy and whey protein, found in products such as soy milk and low-fat yogurt, has been shown to reduce breast cancer incidence in rats. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Manchester Food Futures is a partnership that embraces a wide range of individuals and organisations with an interest in improving food in the city.
Its ambitious goal is to create a culture of good food in the city, based on the belief that good food is enjoyable, safe, nutritious, environmentally sustainable, and produced ethically and fairly; and that everyone in Manchester has a right to good food – no-one should have this right denied because of where they live, their income or their background.
The link between diet and health is undisputed. It has been estimated that dietary factors account for up to a third of deaths from coronary heart disease and a quarter of cancer deaths. This equates to approximately 900 deaths in Manchester every year that could be attributable to diet related cancer and coronary heart disease. Dietary changes could prevent up to a third of all cancers from occurring in the first place. Within the city, only 23% of adults are eating the recommended minimum of 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day. Obesity is an increasing problem and recent statistics show approximately 15% of school children in Manchester are obese.
The Food Futures strategy embraces the whole food agenda for the city – from improving health, tackling health inequalities and reducing the environmental impact of food, to building sustainable communities and strengthening the local economy.

To know more, please visit FOOD VISION

Is the CAP a ground for European disunion?

An assessment of the solidarity mechanisms created by the CAP and their relevance after 2013 by Nadège Chambon

Published by Notre Europe June 24 2011

Europe - Satellite image - PlanetObserver

Europe – Satellite image – PlanetObserver (Photo credit: PlanetObserver)

 

The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) has been based on three types of solidarity since 1962: financial solidarity between Member States, Community preference and the solidarity of the Community towards farmers. These types of solidarity have been led astray or weakened over time while new measures favourable to European cohesion have been incorporated into the CAP in the 1970s and the 1980s: compensation of natural handicaps, food programme for the most deprived persons, rural development.
Whilst it was a pioneer in European solidarity, the CAP causes a division which peaks regularly during budgetary negotiations. The distribution of direct aid (a third of the EU’s expenditure) crystallises criticisms: it is more advantageous to big farming countries to the detriment of rich countries with little agriculture; it benefits regions in different ways according to their territorial specialisation; it foresees a different system between the EU15 and EU12 until 2013. This situation gives the impression that European public money is badly spent.
This policy paper proposes the state of European solidarity mechanisms within the CAP, evaluates the relevance of it in the modern context and comes up with proposals to reform them after 2013.

Please visit Notre Europeto know more

Why sustainable food procurement?

The Food Tent

The Food Tent (Photo credit: Jon Person)

Why should local government get involved?
“Sustainability focuses on providing the best outcomes for both the human and natural environments now, and into the indefinite future.”
The UK Government buys £13 billion worth of goods and services each year, for the wider public sector this figure is £125 billion (1).  This year, the UK’s 468 local authorities will spend over £80 billion on day to day services – over a quarter of all public expenditure (2).
It is clear that with such significant buying power the public sector can make a great deal of difference if it changes its buying habits, creating a large market for more sustainable products and ways of procuring those products.
But why sustainable food?
As for all public sector activities, it is important that a policy can be shown to benefit the local community.  How food is served, prepared, purchased and produced can have a significant impact on the health of individuals, communities and their environment.
For local councils sustainable food is about (2):
• Promoting good health
• Having access to healthy food.
• Supporting the local economy by buying food from as close by as possible
• Eating food in season
• Sustainable farming, involving high environmental standards and reduced energy consumption
• Promoting animal welfare, and valuing nature and biodiversity
• Fair prices, fair trade and ethical employment in the UK and overseas.
Food procurement not only effects the wider global environment but also directly affects the health of the individuals who eat it.
Sustainable food procurement allows both the healthy eating, economic and environmental agenda to be combined and acted upon . It gives local government an opportunity to take the lead in a field where we can truly make a difference to our local communities.
For more info and a toolkit, please visit FOOD VISION

European Parliament set to pass new consumer rights bill into law

The official emblem of the European Parliament.

The official emblem of the European Parliament. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Consumers and businesses alike should reap the benefits of new consumer rights legislation in Europe, with years of negotiations set to conclude with the approval by the European Parliament on Thursday (23 June) of the EU’s Consumer Rights Directive.

Last week (16 June), the Parliament’s internal market and consumer protection (IMCO) committee backed at first reading a compromise agreement on the draft law reached on 6 June between representatives of all three EU institutions, paving the way for this week’s first-reading vote in plenary.
‘Win-win’ situation for businesses, consumers
“Consumers and businesses will equally win. We are a big step closer to a truly common internal market in Europe,” said German centre-right MEP Andreas Schwab (European People’s Party), who is steering the directive through the Parliament, ahead of the vote.
Describing the directive as “a good compromise between necessary consumer rights and justified business interests,” Schwab said it would serve as an example of where “more Europe” benefits shoppers and traders alike.
Brussels has been wrestling with the legislation since it was first tabled by the European Commission back in 2008 (see ‘Background’).
“More safety for consumers shopping online and common rules for businesses – these are the headlines of the political agreement between the Parliament and the Council on the Consumer Rights Directive,” said Schwab.
An EU-wide right for consumers to change their minds about purchase decisions within two weeks and clearer pricing rules for Internet sales were among changes made to the draft legislation by representatives of the European Parliament, the European Commission and member states in trialogue talks earlier this month.
That deal was backed unanimously by the IMCO committee with 28 votes in favour, none against and three abstentions.

Source: EurActiv

CAP budget status quo

Voting on a draft own-initiative report by German MEP Albert Dess (European People’s Party), the committee said that the EU’s farm budget should be kept at least at its current level when the policy is reformed from 2014, “in order to meet the challenges of food security, environmental protection and climate change”. The CAP budget is currently worth €55 billion a year and amounts to 40% of the bloc’s total annual spending.

The report represents the lawmakers’ first response to a European Commission paper on the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) in 2020, published in November 2010.

Fairer distribution
The committee further noted that CAP money should be distributed more fairly between member states and farmers. They demanded that in future “each EU country should receive a minimum percentage of EU average payments,” with direct payments reserved for “active farmers”, the definition of which is yet to be agreed upon.
The ‘old’ member states of the EU-15 currently receive more financial support per farmer than the newer member states, and some of the payments go to wealthy landowners who do not necessarily use their land for production.
MEPs also backed Commission proposals to introduce a ceiling on direct payments per farmer and suggested that the size, the employment record and the degree of environmental protection of each farm should be taken into account when deciding on payments.

SOURCE AND MORE INFO: EUROACTIV

Food Vision toolkits

English: Local food cartoon created for Transi...

English: Local food cartoon created for Transition Town Worthing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Food Vision toolkits provide more detailed information and guidance about specific types of initiative, such as farmers’ markets or local food strategies, or settings for food work such as schools or workplaces. They draw together good practice from a number of local and regional initiatives in delivering a particular project. In general the toolkits aim to provide an overview of what is involved in setting up a food project, covering areas such as benefits, policy, legislation, as well as links to other useful websites.

Just visit them here!