European Development Days 2015 (EDD) took place on 3-4 June in Brussels.

This 9th edition served also as flagship event for the European Year for Development and offered more than 130 different workshops and sessions on 12 topics.

EDDs gathered more than 5000 attendants this year and speakers included the president of the European Commission Jean Claude Juncker, the president of the European Parliament Martin Schulz, Melinda Gates, European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica, the president of the sixty-ninth session of the United Nations General Assembly Sam Kutesa, Linda McAvan and much more.

03 June 2015 - Belgium - Brussels - European Development Days - EDD - Trade - Empowering smallholders participation in global supply chains © European Union

Speakers (from left) Sergi Corbalan, Shivani Reddy, Judith Sargentini, Francesca Giubilo and Caroline Hickson © European Union

Workshop on smallholders’ participation in global supply chains

During the first day of the event, Fair Trade Advocacy Office organized a workshop “Empowering smallholders’ participation in global supply chains.”, aimed at discussing  the necessary policy interventions to ensure that a serious action is taken to address unsustainable supply chains, from the farmer to the consumer; and in particular how we can guarantee small producers a seat at the table.

WFTO-Europe coordinator Francesca Giubilo was amongst the speakers to present WFTO and its Guarantee System. Other panelists included Sergi Corbalan from Fair Trade Advocacy Office, Caroline Hickson from Fairtrade International, Shivani Reddy from Fairtrade Foundation who presented the latest report on the role of smallholder farmers in Public Private Partnership (PPPs).

Regis Meritan from the European Commission DG DEVCO also joined the speakers and pinpointed that there was a need to address the asymmetry of information we have on supply chains. The workshop, lively moderated by MEP Judith Sargentini was highly attended.

Other workshops WFTO-Europe attended included Joining forces to make undernutrition historyFeeding the planet togetherTrade for inclusive and sustainable growthFeeding the urban world: Local solutions for global challengesFrom cotton production to ethical clothing and fashion.

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