In order to promote technical exchanges between Taiwan and France on the development of circular agriculture, as well as to strengthen Taiwan’s substantive participation in the “4 per 1000 Initiative” proposed by France, Taiwan’s Council of Agriculture and the Bureau Francais de Taipei jointly held, on June 1, the “2017 Taiwan-France Symposium on Circular Agriculture.” The sponsors invited representatives from Taiwan’s industry, government, academia, and research institutions to engage in exchanges and dialogue with regard to the methods and experiences of Taiwan and France in developing circular agriculture, as well as to engage in in-depth exchanges of opinions on matters such as concrete measures to cope with food security issues and climate change.
The COA states that, in the face of global climate change and resource exhaustion, circular agriculture has already become an important policy issue of common concern to both France and Taiwan. In addition to adopting relevant measures and programs, in order to cope with the challenges of climate change and food security, France went a step further and proposed the “4 per 1000 Initiative” at the 21st Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change(UNFCCC-CO21). The hope is that countries will respond, each according to their own cultivation methods, by increasing their carbon capture and storage capacity by 4/1000th per year, as a means to effectively slow down global warming, and consequently ensure food security. Taiwan, having been invited to do so by France, is a participant in the “4 per 1000 Initiative Consodium.” It is hoped that through action in a collective organization, Taiwan can share our experiences in this area with other countries and relevant organizations.
The COA points out that the holding of the “2017 Taiwan-France Symposium on Circular Agriculture” not only provided a look at the evolution in Europe of circular agriculture and innovative new technologies, it allows Taiwan to get in step with the international community in the circular agriculture methods it is promoting. At the conference there were not only experts from both Taiwan and France presenting lectures on specialized topics and sharing experiences, the event also brought together nearly 120 people from Taiwan—including farmers, agribusinesses, farmers’ organizations, and government officials, as well as experts on farming, forestry, fisheries, and animal husbandry—to enthusiastically participate.
The COA explains that this conference specially arranged for industry groups from both countries to engage in sharing and exchanges on the green energy industries from various countries in Asia and Europe, on the current state of the development of circular agriculture, and on best practices. At the same time, the representatives from France were invited to make visits to sites related to biogas generation and the livestock industrial chain, to demonstrate Taiwan’s achievements so far in circular agriculture. It is anticipated that the conference will create opportunities for transnational industrial and technical cooperation, and will propel even deeper exchanges and cooperation between France and Taiwan in the bio-economy, agricultural resources, renewable energy, and agricultural innovation. It is also hoped that farmers and those in related lines of business will strive to transition from the previous “linear” consumption model for agricultural production to a new “circular model” of agricultural operations, to think about resource use from the perspectives of environmental protection and green value-added, and to move toward sustainable agricultural operations characterized by re-use, restoration, and circular usage.