The first “producer group” in Wallonia was officially inaugurated on Tuesday in Ciney in the presence of the Walloon Minister of Agriculture, René Collin. Composed of 18 Walloon breeders of organic swine, it is aimed at allowing producers to be better equipped in the face of the price crisis that affects their sector.
More specifically, the producer group “GP Porcs Bio” aims to obtain a higher purchase price for organic swine in Belgium. The “major challenge” is to guarantee a long-term remunerative price to its member-producers. The current paradox is that despite an ever-increasing demand for organic pork, many breeders have turned away from swine speculation due to lack of profitability.
“A producer group is a valuable tool for our organic swine breeders, as long as it complies with basic and strict rules (notably in terms of governance, representativeness and recognition by public authorities). This tool Offers them a stronger bargaining position in the establishment of commercial contracts (clauses on methods of calculating prices, quality criteria, deliveries, agricultural practices, etc.)”, the National Union of Belgian Agrobiologists (Unab), the origin of the group, explained in a press release.
The 18 member breeders undertake to comply with demanding standards of quality and animal welfare and aim to announce the launch of a specific brand in the coming months.
For his part, Minister Collin acknowledged the importance of the approach and recalled the adoption of a decree by the Walloon government in October 2016, granting start-up aid for producer groups and organisations in the agricultural sector.
Other producer groups in the organic sector will be announced over the short term.