Advancing sustainable animal products (ASAP)

Northwest European countries are similar in many relevant ways. Our markets are strongly intertwined. Moreover, there is a shared and growing awareness of the importance of sustainability, animal welfare, and the role of financing in furthering these objectives. Throughout the whole food value chain, initiatives exist that aim to give these values a more central place in production, sales and consumption of animal products.

At the same time, there is currently relatively little international integration of these initiatives. To exchange knowledge and promote integration, the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality (LNV) has established the project ‘Advancing sustainable animal products’ (ASAP). On this website, you find all information regarding the ASAP project. If you or your organization would like to get involved with its activities or if you have interesting ideas regarding the various topics, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Welcome to this online conference about advancing sustainable animal products.

The acronym, ASAP, was chosen on purpose.

It is our joint task to enhance the sustainability of animal products on the international market.

Achieving sustainability is an urgent task.

But how do we do this?

But for this to happen we need to make visible the increase in animal welfare.

And we need to do so with an EU-wide animal-welfare label which empowers consumers to have a choice.

And here I have to say that the Northwestern part of Europe does not need ideas of the European Commission – can provide ideas to the European Commission and spread something that is one of the competitive advantages of Northwestern Europe.

And we really believe that working there hand in hand, together, with farmers, with, let’s say, producers who are part of the chain to make animal-based products can really take small steps but with a very big impact.

At the moment we need to make sure that farming sustainable farming systems at farm finance themselves, because, simply, farmers do not produce only for us, but also for others and we need to be very careful with, well, making it part of our negotiations.

It is a tricky one, but initially it is a good way to get it done and to get things on track.

And this, actually, makes it then easier for the consumer, because the consumer does no longer need to know what all the different labels mean, and does not need to take the buying decision based on just how nice the label looks, or not nice the label looks, no. They can really base the buying decision on fixed and very transparent criteria.

What is behind, what is the underlying scheme?

And that they know what they choose.

The bottom line was that everybody was really enthusiastic about it.

And the farmer at the table.

And my final illustration: it’s about taking the next step together in an integrated way.