Organic Agriculture and Eco-Gozo
The Ministry for Gozo in collaboration with the Malta Organic Agriculture Movement (MOAM) has held an international conference on organic agriculture and its relevance to the eco-Gozo vision.
This conference was organised concurrently with the visit to Gozo of delegates of the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movement - EU Group (IFOAM-EU) which will be meeting in Gozo over the weekend. During their meeting, which takes place every six months, the participants discuss the current issues and the development of new European policies relating to organic agriculture.
During her introductory speech, the Minister for Gozo, the Hon. Giovanna Debono said that this conference is offering a unique opportunity for local operators to gain information on organic agriculture and its value for sustainable development. She insisted that agriculture will always remain one of the most important economic activities which will contribute in the achievement of the eco-Gozo vision.
She said that organic agriculture does not only involve organic practices, but furthermore it entails a better quality of life for the farmer. The Minister also said that sustainable agriculture in Gozo will increase the unique identity of the island while having a direct effect on the landscape, the employment sector as well as tourism.
The conference 'Organic Agriculture and eco-Gozo A world of challenges, opportunities and innovation' was addressed by Maltese speakers as well as other lecturers coming from Iceland, Belgium, Slovenia, Hungary and Germany. They treated several subjects; alternative energy, organic farming, global and local challenges faced by an ecological island and the European Regulations regarding the official recognition of organic products. Mr. Christopher Stopes the president of the IFOAM-EU also addressed the conference. Attendants to the conference came from various sectors including agriculture, the environment, tourism, business, students, as well as the general public.
This conference was concluded with the official inauguration of a collective art exhibition 'Perspectives of an Ecological Island' by four Maltese and Gozitan artists captivating Gozo's natural beauty. These works showcase the environmental and rural characteristics of this island which are the fundamental elements in the eco-Gozo concept.