Commoditrader expands the partnership with APPR – the Romanian Corn Producers Association for the CommodiCarbon program, in order to co-finance Romanian farmers by selling carbon certificates, in the process of transition to conservative agriculture. Farmers with about 140,000 ha total showed interest in selling carbon certificates at the end of this harvest year.
“We aim to work with APPR to help and stimulate Romanian farmers towards a better economy, more sustainable agriculture, as well as more efficient farm management”, stated Alexandra Suciu Sørensen, Commoditrader Market Development Manager Romania.
Being a digital platform, direct contact with farmers is highly important. APPR is a professional association formed by producers and representatives of the professional corn chain in Romania. Their common objectives of this strategic partnership consist in providing economic and technological information to association members and the Romanian farmers’ communities.
“CommodiCarbon project is aligned with our goals to popularize the benefits of sustainable and regenerative agriculture among farmers. We want to encourage APPR members to become champions in the transition from conventional to sustainable agriculture, especially as the European society prepares appropriate financial instruments to reward this effort, including the introduction of a carbon credit system for agriculture”, stated Cristina Cionga, European Affairs Director of APPR.
Commoditrader will technically train an APPR specialist regarding the CommodiCarbon program, launched in Romania at the end of 2020. Cristina Radu is a member of the APPR team, a USAMV graduate in Engineering and Environmental Protection in Agriculture, and a graduate in Crop Protection and Sustainable Development in France. She will go through an initiation process and certification in advising farmers regarding the implementation of conservative farming practices.
Through its technical consultant, APPR will be actively involved in educating and supporting farmers in the CommodiCarbon program, providing them with all the necessary information, the conditions to be admitted, support for drafting documents, and technical assistance on conservative farming practices, suitable for each type of land and each farm.
“APPR members manifested a high interest in this program and farmers are open to adopting innovative techniques to meet the challenges posed by climate change. By collaborating with Commoditrader we will be able to offer additional benefits, providing them with a business model adapted suitable for their needs, but also aligned with current company standards, which makes us happy and gives us hope that together we can make a difference. We want farmers’ practices to be part of sustainability solutions and support their mission to provide food security for citizens. We sustain all efforts to combat climate change and its effects, especially when they are pragmatic, feasible, and accompanied by financial instruments that keep us competitive in the global marketplace”, added Cristina Cionga, European Affairs Director of APPR.
Romanian farmers with 140,000 ha total have already shown interest in the CommodiCarbon
“CommodiCarbon project was launched in Romania about two months ago and we already have farmers with a total of approximately 140,000 ha pre-registered in the system. They are interested in selling carbon certificates at the end of this harvest year. In Denmark, we have farmers, with over 100,000 ha”, stated Alexandra Suciu Sørensen.
“However, conservative agriculture is still a difficult topic to reach in Romania and many farmers have failed in their efforts to implement conservative agriculture. Therefore, it is very important that we have advisers ready to help in the agricultural conversion, so that farmers have a sustainable strategy to move to a greener form of cultivation. At the same time, they obtain co-financing for conversion through CommodiCarbon, thus reducing the risk on several parameters”, concludes Alexandra Suciu Sørensen.
The transition to conservative agriculture requires a long-term commitment, as soil quality, biodiversity, and soil properties need more time to be improved. These methods could have multiple benefits, such as better water retention in the soil or soil erosion reduction if everything is planned and monitored. At the same time, carbon and greenhouse gases are absorbed, which is extremely useful in combating climate change.
The cost of the CommodiCarbon program, the conditions of registration, and the commitment of farmers
The cost of enrollment in the program is 50€/month, a discount available until March 2021, and valid for the first year of activity. After March, the enrollment cost is 100€/month. If the farmer is not satisfied with the potential, he can give up the subscription before sending his cultivation plans for this season and does not imply any obligation.
Conditions for joining the CommodiCarbon program for farmers
Once the farmer joins the program, he commits for at least five years, in which he is not allowed to plow the land or intervene at a depth of more than 8-10 cm under the ground on the plots introduced in the program. The farmer is not bound to register with the entire area he owns. However, the land area registered cannot represent less than 100 ha.
The information required for the registration in the CommodiCarbon program concerns the soil characteristics (soil organic matter, soil texture, pH value, moisture, drainage), soil management practices (types and cultivation practices, gross production/ha, residue management), cultivation practices and cover crops of the last five years, to determine the baseline of the plot, as well as the inputs (types of fertilizers and crop protection, as well as application rounds, fuel consumption, and the number of irrigation).