Hesse’s Minister of the Environment Hinz is pleased to be able to extend the project to the entire country. School lunches are said to come from organic farms and consumers choose regional products.
The Hessian government wants to see more farmers work according to organic criteria and market their products better regionally. Gastronomy, school kitchens and retailers should be encouraged to offer such foods.
There are many ways to achieve this. Organic farms team up with schools and company canteens to regularly offer organic beef. Buying guides show consumers the way. Farm tours, gourmet evenings and workshops for children are offered in regional organic weeks.
The state government is providing 18 million euros for the implementation of the eco-action plan in the period up to 2025, for example to promote the marketing of eco-products.
31 million euros flow into organic farming each year. Businesses receive money for every hectare they cultivate ecologically.
In 2020 and 2021, 18 million euros will be available to promote diverse arable crops. This also benefits conventional farmers.
The state provides 17 million euros in funding for buildings and other projects for regional dairies, cheese factories and slaughterhouses. pit
All of this has been tried out in Hesse’s eco-model regions for five years. Environment Minister Priska Hinz (Greens) in Wiesbaden reported on Friday that all regions are now participating. All of Hesse is “the eco-model region for Germany”. The country politician hopes that the country will become “a role model for other area countries”. The model regions will be funded for five years from 2021, for example by Hesse assuming personnel costs for project coordinators.
The newly added regions include not only rural areas, but also the large cities of Frankfurt, Offenbach and Wiesbaden. “There is also a pronounced agricultural production and good soil in Wiesbaden and in the Frankfurt area,” said Karl-Eckart Mascus, spokesman for the new eco-model region “Nassauer Land”, which includes Wiesbaden and two counties. Above all, however, “the consumer is right in front of the door”. This could be used even better by regional producers. “You have to go to the catering trade, you have to go to the school kitchens,” added Claudia Zohner, representative of the Wetterau eco-model region. For example, school catering in the Lahn-Dill-Gießen region should be converted to regional organic products. The aim is to increase the share to up to 30 percent in the next three years.
The model regions want to ensure that soil, water and air are protected, animal welfare is taken into account and long transport routes become superfluous. Organic farming contributes to all of this, explained Mascus.
Conventional companies could also make a contribution to species protection and regional marketing. “It is important to us that we do not polarize into good and bad farmers,” said the spokesman for the model region “Nassauer Land”.