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48th Salon International de l'Agriculture Opens

21 February 2011

FRANCE - President Nicolas Sarkozy opened the 48th Salon International de l'Agriculture on Saturday morning. He was accompanied by the Minister for Agriculture, Bruno Le Maire. Both figures toured the show, meeting farmers before attending a round table discussion on agriculture.

During the panel discussion, the President said that the French presidency of the G20 wants to introduce more transparency and regulation in the global market for agricultural commodities.

Mr Sarkozy asked if there are no farmers in France, who will maintain the countryside?

"We must work to modernise industries, enhance the competitiveness of French agriculture - and exports - and work on distribution by increasing opportunities in circuit court," said the head of state.

Commenting on the plight of farmers, Mr Sarkozy also suggested that the normal price paid to farmers evolves according to the price of animal feed.

"I'm very favourable to the development of insurance systems. We need to work on the cover of risks associated with these increases in feed prices for livestock."

The President finally welcomed the expansion of organic farming, the number of organic farms undergoing conversion has increased by 25 per cent in one year.

"I believe in the future of French agriculture. If they wish, the next generation should have the means to continue this activity," concluded the President.

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