Lately, the consumer becomes more aware of environmental issues and wants to help tackle global warming. From their perspective, labels are a good way to know better what they are buying. However to achieve such a label, a farmer has to invest time and money, which is not always available. How can we help the farmers? Which reward systems are available for tackling environmental problems? Which environmental problems should be tackled?

From the European Union, the Green Deal is coming up with the Farm-to-Fork strategy. This strategy promotes a healthy and more sustainable EU food system. It is a very ambitious strategy with tight goals related to global warming and environmental pollution from agriculture. It also describes, via the Common Agriculture Policy (CAP), how initiatives should be rewarded. However, the CAP cannot finance all these investments; they rely also on other public or private initiatives. These are only a few of the options to support the farmer, but how exactly will this help the farmer?

These are a few of the questions and topics we would like to tackle in the upcoming year. During a brainstorm session in our TWG, we developed following road map for the coming year: we will map all existing reward systems over the different regions, related to beef production. Once we have the overview, we will classify them to have a better overview on the different types that are already available. In addition, we will look to other animal systems (small ruminants, poultry, swine) if certain reward systems used could be interesting for beef production. Further, we will look in scientific literature to cluster all relevant (and correct) information on environmental pollution, problem areas, global change, etc. to have information to educate the consumer better. In addition, we will also add information on the positive role of beef systems on environmental issues (diversity, landscape, etc.). When all information is collected, we would like to sit together with beef farmers to discuss which parts in such a system are feasible and which parts are difficult to achieve. Also, it would be interesting to hear from the farmer what their vision is on a reward system and how to finance this. At the end, based on everything we gathered, we will propose different innovations within a reward system and would like to be able to describe the best (potential) reward system.

Road map of the topic on Reward Systems