The winning projects of the 2nd EPP European Congress of Young Farmers were presented today.
The project of the Dutch young farmer Eric Pelleboer won the Best Young Farmer award. Eric presented an online platform http://heteetcafe.eu/ where farmers and citizens can meet. Most people in the Netherlands live in the city and know less and less about their food. This online platform therefore creates a link between the producers and the consumers.
Dutch EPP Group MEP Esther de Lange, acting as ambassador for the winners, stated: “I am very proud of the Dutch young farmers. Winning the top prize is recognition of their skills. This Congress establishes a dialogue between young farmers across Europe that allows them to face the challenges of the future of agriculture in Europe together.”
The project of the Spanish young farmer Pedro Gallardo won the Most Innovative award. Pedro pioneered a different way of planting sunflower seeds, allowing him to do it very early in the year and also permitting him to increase the density of seed per hectare from 70.000 to 110.000.
The Spanish EPP Group MEP Auxiliadora Correa Zamora, co-organiser of the event and ambassador for the winners, said: “I am very proud of the Spanish winner and also of this 2nd Congress. The EPP Group is aware of the responsibility it has towards young farmers. These 350 young farmers that we have gathered at this congress will play a leading role in innovating European agriculture. It is a perfect stage for exchanging views, debating ideas and finding solutions.”
The project of the Hungarian young farmer Dániel Bakó won the Most Sustainable award. Dániel presented a different way of producing paprika in special politubes designed by him with a shape that allows the nesting of local species whilst using geothermic energy.
Hungarian EPP Group MEP Glattefelder Béla, also acting as ambassador for the winners, added: “I am delighted that Dániel has won this prize. I am President of the Platform of Renewable Energy in Hungary. One of our most important members is the Geothermal Association and we are proud to see an award that involves the use of this type of energy in agriculture.”
“By supporting the 2nd EPP European Young Farmers Congress, we are clearly illustrating our brands' commitment to agriculture in general and young farmers in particular”, said Matthew Foster, Vice-President of the sponsoring agricultural equipment manufacturer Case IH & Steyr in his welcome address. “There have been quite some impressive entries, showing what young farmers are willing and able to do. I indeed hope that the messages of this event will be heard loud and clear and that this congress will lead to further recognition and support, politically as well as socially, for our young farmers,” he concluded
The EPP Group is by far the largest political group in the European Parliament with 274 Members from 27 Member States.