“Is carbon farming a real opportunity
for Belgian agriculture?”
February 23rd 2024

The Belgian Association of Agricultural Economists (BAAE) invites you to the workshop “Is carbon farming a real opportunity for Belgian agriculture?” The workshop will take place on this Friday February 23d from 3pm to 6pm in Louvain-la-Neuve.

Speakers include:

  • Professor Goedele Van den Broeck, UCLouvain
  • Professor Erik Mathijs, KULeuven
  • Mr Nicolas Verschuere, Soil Capital
  • Ms Fien Vandekerchove, Boerenbond

A drink will follow the workshop.

The venue is the Ocean room, B002, at the ground floor of the building ‘de Serres’, Place de la Croix du Sud. To reach the building ‘de Serres’ (tower B) at the Place Croix du Sud by train or car, please consult this link: https://uclouvain.be/en/research-institutes/eli/elim/acces.html .
If you arrive by car, free parking without the need for a parking sticker is located nearby: parking Baudouin 1er, at the intersection of Boulevard Baudouin 1er and Avenue du Jardin Botanique, Louvain-la-Neuve.

To register, please send an email to bvleaber@gmail.com with a copy to Bruno.Henrydefrahan@uclouvain.be by February 15 and make sure to pay your BAAE membership fee of 20€ by then for 2024 via https://bvle-aber.be/membership/

The European Commission aims to achieve climate neutrality at the latest by 2050 and negative emissions thereafter. For this, the EU needs to increase carbon removals, i.e., the sequestration of carbon from the atmosphere through technical solutions, and establish sustainable carbon cycles in agriculture. 
On 30 November 2022, the Commission adopted a proposal for a first EU-wide voluntary framework to reliably certify high-quality carbon removals. The proposal sets out rules for: the independent verification of carbon removals, the recognition of certification schemes. The carbon removal certificates can be used for result-based rewards by private or public sources. 
At this stage, there is no question yet of greenhouse gas emission offsetting through the mechanism of carbon credits. But, upcoming EU legislation will cover the specific use of offsets. 
As well as legislation, there are also private initiatives. For instance, in Belgium and France: the Soil Capital platform. Under this system, farmers receive one certificate per tonne of carbon saved. Companies wishing to reduce their carbon footprint purchase these certificates via the Soil Capital platform, making it financially attractive for farmers to reduce their CO2 emissions. 
However, the prospect of carbon credits raises a number of questions:
– Risk of land grabbing by non-agricultural investors or financialization of agriculture with the possibility of raising farmland price? 
– Marginalisation of small-scale farms which do not have the means in terms of capital and know-how to invest in new practices? 
– Support to a new green washing? 
– Agricultural production down and no longer sufficient? 
– etc.

Guido Van Huylenbroeck
President BVLE/ABER

Koen Carels
Secretary BVLE/ABER

Belgian Francqui Chair
Professor dr. ir.
Wim Verbeke

March 6th 2024

Rector Herman Van Goethem and Professor Koen Vandenbempt, dean of the Faculty of Business and Economics are pleased to invite you to the inaugural lecture by Professor dr. ir. Wim Verbeke, laureate of the Belgian Francqui Chair 2023-2024

Inaugural lecture:

Laudatio given by the promotors: Professor Nathalie Dens & Professor Steven Van Passel

After the lecture you are invited to the reception.

University of Antwerp, Stadscampus,
Tassis en Dürerzaal, Prinsstraat 13, 2000 Antwerp

Please confirm your attendance before 26 February  2024.

    Wim Verbeke is full professor of agri-food marketing and consumer behaviour in the Department of Agricultural Economics at Ghent University. He valorises his complementary background in natural (bio-engineering) and social (economic) sciences by studying the behaviour of consumers and other stakeholders in the agri-food sector. A wide range of topics and research questions have passed the review over the past 25 years, with the protein component on our plates usually being the common thread.

    The much-discussed protein transition was initiated 25 years ago and the call to shift gears resonates louder today than ever before. In his inaugural lecture, Wim Verbeke provides a view from the perspective of agri-food marketing and consumer research on the choices made, the evolution of the research themes and agenda, the insights gained and the new questions that arise about the protein transition. These include the rise of flexitarianism, the introduction and acceptance of alternative protein sources such as insects, microalgae or cultured meat, and diversity among consumers.

    Photo by Koen Carels, june 2021, Zwijnaarde Gent

    The Belgian Association of Agricultural Economists (BAAE) aims to bring together those interested in the field of agricultural policy and agricultural economics around certain specific themes that are usually clarified from an academic perspective. However, the BAAE is not only aimed at specialists in the research world, but also at those who practise agricultural economics in practice: people from professional circles, members of administrations, politicians, leading figures from the business world including supplying and processing companies, students, etc.