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Formentera announces €30,000 in four new subsidies for rural areas and livestock farming

foto 2022 javi parejoThe Formentera Office of Rural Environment is pleased to announce a call for new specific aid for initiatives related to the local rural landscape and livestock in 2022. Applications may be submitted the entire month of June.

There are three specific lines of assistance for the agricultural sector:

A) Support for organic farming (€4,000)

The purpose of this line of aid is to promote organic agriculture in rural parts of Formentera and help growers buy raw materials like seeds and fertilisers.

B) Promoting biodegradable materials in agricultural mulching (€6,000)

The purpose of this line of aid is to establish the framework of aid to promote mulching with biodegradable materials in agricultural crops.

C) Sowing traditional local cereal crops (€5.000)

The purpose of this line of aid is to help owners of agricultural land safeguard traditional local varieties of cereals which are at risk of genetic erosion. The aid aims to offset high costs of cultivating and conserving local cereals like traditional xeixa wheat, oats and barley during the 2021-2022 season.

In livestock farming:

D) Aid for sheep and/or goat farms (€15,000)

Money will be granted to sheep and goat farm owners to ensure the economic viability of these farms and reduce the risk of abandonment. €50 will be delivered per eligible female sheep and goat kept as breeding animals in accordance with the compulsory census declaration.

Information meeting

At 9.00am on Thursday 12 May, the Consell de Formentera assembly hall will be the site of an informative meeting where staff specialists in the Formentera Office of Rural Affairs will speak to members of the Livestock Farmers' Association, Farmland Cooperative [Cooperativa del Camp] and the Business Association of Growers. The meeting is also open to any interested farmer or rancher.

Josep Marí, Councillor of Rural Affairs, said the new grants were designed to "continue promoting and supporting agriculture and livestock operations on our island's rural landscape so they can maintain and if possible increase their activity". If funding remains in any of the lines of assistance, the money will be added to categories of assistance that have been exhausted. "The ultimate goal is for this €30,000 to end up in the hands of farmers who need it, whose work is so important for our countryside and landscapes", said Councillor Marí.

Subsidies may be requested online through the Ovac (www.consellinsulardeformentera.cat) or in person at the Citizen Information Office [Oficina d'Atenció Ciutadana, OAC]. Complete details will be available on the Consell de Formentera website after publication of the call in the BOIB in the days ahead.

10 May 2021
Communications Office
Consell de Formentera

Consell signs concerted action agreement with Cooperativa del Camp

foto 2022 coop del campAna Juan, President of the Consell de Formentera, and Marcos Ribas, President of the Formentera Farmland Cooperative [Cooperativa del Camp], have signed a concerted action agreement between the two parties to extend the actions of the public programme to reinvigorate the agricultural sector and improve the rural environment and landscape of Formentera in 2022.

The €130,000 agreement aims to help revive agricultural activity on Formentera, continue the Farmland Reserve (Cens de Terres) and renew support for the Cooperativa's work recovering agricultural activity locally.

9 May 2021
Communications Office
Consell de Formentera

Irrigation plan will unlock €1.06m investment to improve regenerated water use on Formentera

foto 2022 pla regadiusToday in Palma, Josep Marí, Councillor of Rural Environment of the Consell de Formentera, and Rita Costa, from the Formentera Community of Irrigators (CRF), attended the signing of an agreement between irrigators' groups on Formentera and in Porreres and the State Commercial Society of Agricultural Infrastructures (Sociedad Mercantil Estatal de Infraestructuras Agrarias, SEIASA) and the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food. This agreement marks the start of phase one of the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan (PRTR), which envisions implementing sustainable irrigation modernisation projects on Formentera and in Porreres.

The agreement, which was signed this Tuesday between the heads of SEIASA and the two groups of irrigators at the offices of the central government's delegation in Palma, involves the investment of €8.48 million in Next Generation funding to optimise, digitise management and improve the quality of water which is reclaimed for agricultural irrigation on Formentera and in Porreres.

With central government delegate Aina Calvo presiding, the ceremony consisted in the signing of the agreements between Francisco Rodríguez Mulero, president of SEIASA; Rita Costa Ferrer, president of CRF, and Juan Mora Adrover, president of the irrigation community of Porreres. Mae de la Concha, Balearic Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, also attended the signing.

The 'Consolidating Irrigation by Optimising Reclaimed Water on Formentera' project has a budget of €1.06m (VAT not included) to modernise 82 hectares of local land under the care of 75 irrigators. Plans envisage improving water quality by improving how reclaimed water is used. Efficiency improvements will affect how water is pumped from the pond to plots and water management will be optimised by digitising irrigation through the installation of a remote control system.

Investments included in the irrigation plan are of a public-private nature. The PRTR will cover up to 80% of eligible expenses, while the irrigation communities and users will contribute the rest.

5 April 2022
Communications Office
Consell de Formentera

Formentera renews feed handouts for drought-hit livestock farmers

foto 2022 menjar ramatThe Formentera Office of Rural Affairs has announced a new tranche of assistance amid the drought that has seen local livestock farmers' feed stocks dwindle. The Formentera Farmers' Co-operative (Cooperativa del Camp, CCF) will distribute 40 tonnes of feed and chopped carob for sheep and goats, and 4,000 kilos of barley flour for pigs.

"Another exceptionally dry year is affecting crops and means supplies of livestock feed are low", explained Josep Marí, Councillor of Rural Affairs, "so we are bringing back this aid to which the Consell de Formentera allocates an initial budget of €14,945."

Interested parties should take their stockbreeder's card (cartilla ramadera) to the CCF warehouse from 8.00am to 2.00pm (Monday to Friday); 4.30pm to 7.30pm (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) or 9.00am to 1.00pm (Saturdays). Aid will be distributed according to the number of animals and breeding animals are eligible for two sacks of feed. According to recent census data, there are 913 head of sheep, goat and pig on the island of Formentera.

17 March 2022
Communications Office
Consell de Formentera

Visit to CCF's fig tree plantation in Can Marroig

foto 2022 figueres can marroig AToday Ana Juan, President of the Consell de Formentera; Miquel Mir, Balearic Minister of Environment; Josep Marí, Councillor of Rural Affairs; Carlos Marí, Manager of the Formentera Farmers' Co-operative (Cooperativa del Camp, CCF); and Llorenç Mas, General Director of the Balearic Office of Natural Spaces and Biodiversity, paid a visit to the Can Marroig estate. At the meeting, the CCF's fig tree planting project was presented.

President Juan praised the CCF for enabling recovery of a traditional agricultural in a protected area and "one that will see our homegrown produce return to local markets".
Carlos Marí offered an overview of the project, which has seen CCF workers line two hectares of Can Marroig with 675 trees, including 12 varieties, for staggered fig production throughout the season. "We hope to start harvesting the first figs in June", confided Marí, describing it as "an intensive plantation tailored for maximum yield".
"When the farm is at full capacity we expect annually to harvest eight tonnes of figs for the local market. Fresh figs will be sold, but we will also try to recover and promote dried figs, including xereques", Marí added, referring to a type of fig which is dried using a technique unique to Formentera. Finally, CCF representatives applauded students of the training workshop held recently in Can Marroig and Ibanat workers for their help with planting.

Minister Mir highlighted "the recovery of one of the traditional uses of an iconic public estate thanks to collaboration between administrations and entities". "We often think of forest management as a tool that functions exclusively to prevent fires, but it is also a way to recover land and make it richer and better equipped to face the climate emergency", he added.

Collective planting plan

The Agricultural and Fishing Guarantee Fund of the Balearic Islands (Fons de Garantia Agrària i Pesquera, FOGAIBA) has granted a subsidy of €9,990 to the plantation, a project which is included in the collective replanting plan which the CCF oversees with help from a dozen members. CCF representatives explained that the 2021-2022 plan involves planting about 4,000 trees, particularly olive and fig trees, with funding support from FOGAIBA.

Supporting the CCF

Councillor Marí pointed out that, since March 2015, when the CCF was reactivated, the Consell de Formentera has subsidised operations with yearly concerted action agreements; in 2022 the grant totalled €130,000. Taken together, concerted action agreements between 2015 and 2021 amounted to €751,413. The Consell de Formentera also built the CCF's warehouse space, and more recently has provided a grain storage and conservation station as well as the machinery required to work the land turned over for the Farmland Reserve (Fons de Terres de Cultiu), which today encompasses 279 hectares donated from 120 individuals.
As Councillor Marí put it, "the aim of all the operations we support is to recover the primary sector and maintain Formentera's historic landscape by continuing to promote local agriculture". He praised "all the work done" in that regard.
Hand-off agreement

In May 2016, the Consell, Govern balear and Balearic Nature Institute (Institut Balear de la Natura, IBANAT), which holds the title of Can Marroig, signed an agreement clearing the decks for the return of agricultural activity to the estate, and in May 2021 the arrangement was renewed for five more years. The concerted action agreement allows the CCF to use Can Marroig's twelve hectares of arable land for farming.

24 February 2022
Communications Office
Consell de Formentera

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