European farmers and European Agri-Cooperatives representatives gathered in Linz on 10-12 October for the 2018 COPA-COGECA Congress, organized with the support of CEMA and CEMA member company Pöttinger. 

The packed agenda included pre-congress workshops and technical visits, in addition to the full plenary day. European Commissioner for Agriculture Phil Hogan delivered a keynote address focused on the European budget, the CAP proposal and related challenges for simplification, fairness, resilience and sustainability, as well as the potential impact of Brexit. You can read the Commissioner’s speech here.

The Congress notably explored the new information and digital paradigm facing the future of agriculture and the need for farmers to be increasingly innovative, sustainable and resilient. Under the “Smart business models for the future of farming” session, Dr. Heribert Reiter (Vice President Engineering Tractors Global, AGCO Corporation) first set the scene for potential future farming by robotics before CEMA Secretary General Jérôme Bandry contributed to the panel debate on disruptive new business ideas and new talent. Mr Bandry stressed the importance of trust and the willingness to share data as essential enablers for smart farming technologies, leveraging the Code of conduct on agricultural data sharing by contractual agreement, jointly written by the main stakeholders of the sector to cover all relevant digital aspects. Provided investment is delivered for rural broadband infrastructure and further developments enable suitable communication technologies with interoperability, the CEMA Secretary General stressed that value can be created for farmers of all sizes. Data should not only lead to better understanding of the operations or processes, but also lead to better decision making and deliver value that farmers/ cooperatives of all sizes can afford and act upon. European machinery manufacturers are at the forefront of digital technologies and solutions. But we must continue to help our European farmers when it comes to digital awareness, skills, and capacity to invest through a modernized CAP.

As part of the 2018 Copa-Cogeca congress, which brought together over 400 delegates, including EU farmers, policy makers, agricultural industry representatives and SMEs, CEMA also operated a stand to inform farmers and agri-cooperatives representatives about our involvement in EU Research and Innovation projects, such as Agrocycle which addresses recycling and valorization of waste from the agri-food sector. 


collage CopaCogecaCongress2018