ENA summer meeting 2017 has been held in Finland.
The European Nurserystock Association (ENA) General Assembly met in Tampere, Finland, on June 25th and 26th, 2017 and visited the Finish nursery industry over the remainder of the week.
Almost forty delegates from sixteen European countries participated in the trip and discussed the main concerns of the European nursery sector. Taimistoviljelijät Planskoleodlarna ry, the Finish Nurserymen’s Association, hosted the meeting led by their President Mr Arttu Haverinen and their Executive Director Mr Jyri Uimonen.
The General Assembly approved the work done by the ENA Legislation Working Group, chaired by Mr Marc Van Hulle, following up the EU Plant Health legislation and its implementation, and asked to continue representing the nursery stock sector in Brussels, intensifying the contacts with the EC. Evidently, the greatest concern of ENA members was the spread of the bacterium Xylella fastidiosa. On this subject, it was agreed that ENA will write to the European Commission to support the eradication measures they have put in place to avoid the spread of the Xylella in the EU, that must be implemented thoroughly and efficiently. At the same time ENA will remind them that the EU principle of free movement of goods must be guaranteed for all plants complying with the EU Plant Health legislation. It was also concluded that the Pest Risk Analysis on Xylella fastidiosa adopted by EFSA on December 2014 should be updated because the situation has considerably evolved since then, and it should include the current knowledge, experience and a thorough study of the climatic risk of the spread of the bacterium. Finally, it was also highlighted that the EC should increase the funding to member states to allow faster eradication rates, better and quicker compensation for owners as the best way to speed up eradication and higher rate of controls, including those to plants received from other EU countries, to ensure that Plant Passporting is correct.
EU Fertilisers Regulation
The ENA General Assembly expressed its satisfaction for the decision of most of the European Parliament Committees involved in discussing rules for CE marked fertilising products to amend the biodegradability criteria for coating agents. These modifications should allow European growers to keep using Controlled Release Fertilisers, and it was agreed on to ask the Council and the Commission to meet the same criteria.
IAS: Invasive Alien Species
After analysing the recent proposal of the second update of the list of Invasive Alien Species of European Concern, recently approved by the IAS Committee of the European Commission, the delegates showed their concern at the lack of economic and social impact analysis and of transparency of the whole process. President Mr Tim Edwards pointed out that “the economic impact of the decisions on IAS should be taken into consideration as demanded in the Regulation itself”.
As a final point, the General Assembly discussed the application made by ENA for an EU promotion grant to make a “Green Cities for Europe” campaign from 2018 until 2020. ENA members considered it was very appropriate that ENA represents the whole nursery sector and that it tries to put together the whole green industry aiming to unify efforts towards the Green City idea.