HomePlantsState Officials Interested in the Agricultural Future Visits NordGen

State Officials Interested in the Agricultural Future Visits NordGen

Date: 17.05.2019 Author: Sara Landqvist Category: Plants
Peter Vermeij and Renske Nijland talking to NordGen staff.

This week, Dutch state officials keen to learn more about NordGen visited Alnarp. They were particularly interested in how our work can be useful in developing the agriculture to adapt to the challenges of the future. This is an issue more urgent now as climate change happens faster than before.

Peter Vermeij is Agricultural Counsellor for Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, Sweden and Norway, based at the Dutch Embassy in Berlin. This week, he and Renske Nijland, from the Dutch Embassy in Copenhagen, visited NordGen.
“The main challenge for the future is how to adapt to climate change. This, as well as sustainability, is a very important issue in our country. In that respect, it’s important to find resistance in plants to stay away from the use of pesticides”, says Peter Vermeij.

European collaboration needed

Peter Vermeij and Renske Nijland are being shown our greenhouse and are fascinated by the different appearances of different wild barley varieties. According to Peter Vermeij, cooperation is need, at least on a European level, to adapt the agriculture to the future. But it’s also important to make sure that the public are aware of and understands the work being done.
“That’s important for a healthy future for the agriculture, but also for our rural areas. If you don’t have a good agriculture which fit to the local conditions you’re losing a lot of your cultural heritage but also the possibilities to adapt the agriculture to the future”, he says.

Important topic for NordGen

Being prepared for the agricultural challenges ahead is an important topic also for NordGen. That’s why we, in cooperation with NordGen, arranged a conference gathering plant breeders, researchers and farmer’s organizations focusing on the Nordic agriculture and climate change. The purpose was to identify what’s needed the secure our agriculture for climate change and other challenges in the future. The conference resulted in a report called “Nordic Agriculture and Climat Change: Mitigation and Adaptation”.
“The conference was an excellent initiative. It showed and helped spread the word of that we need private-public partnerships. I’m very keen to pass the message on to my colleagues in the Haague”, Peter Vermeij says and strokes the wild barley once more before leaving NordGen and bringing new contacts and ideas to Berlin.