U.S. Sustainability Alliance members participated in the US-EU Collaboration Platform on Agriculture’s (CPA) second in-person stakeholder session in Washington, D.C., on 8-9 April.  The event was attended by representatives from organizations such as the Almond Board of California, the American Feed Industry Association, the Leather & Hide Council of America, the U.S. Dairy Export Council, the North American Export Grain Association, and the U.S. Soybean Export Council. 

The CPA was set up by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and European Union Agriculture Commissioner Janusz Wojciechowski, and the inaugural event took place in Brussels in December 2022. Through the CPA, USDA and the EU’s Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development and respective stakeholders exchange knowledge and mutual understanding on issues facing agricultural productivity.

The CPA is structured around an agreed annual work program covering three main areas for collaboration: Sustainability and Agriculture, Climate and Agriculture, and Agri-food exchanges. Following opening remarks by Secretary Vilsack and Under Secretary for Trade & Foreign Agricultural Affairs Alexis Taylor, the event was led by USDA Acting Deputy Under-Secretary Jason Hafemeister and the European Commission’s Deputy Director-General DG AGRI Pierre Bascou. The overarching themes across six expert panels were resilience of the food chain, innovation, measuring sustainability, and reinforcing the position of farmers in the food chain and society. Some 80 participants from the EU and the U.S. took part in the meeting. A field tour on the second day of the CPA brought participants to farms in Maryland, first to the livestock, grain, and wine grape Schmidt Farms, a member of Maryland’s Agricultural Hall of Fame, and second to the wheat, corn, and soybean Councell Farms, which has been farmed by the same family since the 1690s. A panel discussion was held at Triple Creek Winery and the day concluded at Cotton & Reed rum distillery.