The third regional round table within the public campaign Organic Food Month, organized by Agro Cluster of Serbia and NALED as part of the four-year Public Private Dialogue for Growth Project, was organized on Monday, 17 December in Valjevo.
The round table brought together the representatives of Agro Cluster, NALED, National Public Policy Secretariat, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management, certification bodies and a large number of producers. They discussed the issues regarding the production and distribution of organic products in Serbia as well as the specific position of the local farmers.
The aim of the three round tables that were held in Valjevo, Užice and Selenča was to start a public private dialogue for reaching the best solutions which would improve and stimulate the organic production in Serbia.
The main conclusions from the round tables were that the organic farming in Serbia represents a great potential and a major development opportunity, but it still remains underused due to a series of administrative and systemic obstacles faced by the producers. Another problem is that the conventional producers may jeopardize the organic farming by using conventional chemical agents near the organic farms. An additional challenge is the complicated certification procedure, as well as insufficient incentives for the organic producers.
Following the completion of round tables, anyone interested may still join the dialogue by submitting their recommendations via website www.jpd.rs. The best rated recommendations are most likely to be included in the state's agenda for resolving the issues faced by organic food producers in Serbia.
The Public Private Dialogue for Growth Project, including the campaign "Organic Food Month" is financed by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and implemented by NALED in cooperation with the National Public Policy Secretariat.