21 September 2021, France: The President of France, Emmanuel Macron, announced during his speech at the Congress of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which was held in Marseille, that one of his priorities during the period in which France will hold the presidency of the EU, starting January 1, 2022, for six months will be to carry out a strong initiative for the elimination of pesticides.
He reiterated this on his Twitter account, stating: “In 2022, the French Presidency of the Council of the European Union will carry out an initiative for the accelerated elimination of pesticides. To protect our soils, our agricultural activities. Supporting our farmers.”
The reactions to this announcement were immediate: many farmers have responded to the president’s tweet showing their opposition to it. They talk about how unrealistic the proposal is, asking what they’ll do when their crops are affected by a plague, stating that this measure will only serve to benefit imports, and warning that it is a simplistic position to accuse pesticides of all evils… Some people even asked Macron to govern and stop tweeting, others let him know they would no longer vote for him.
The day after the president’s tweet, French Agriculture Minister Julien Denormandie also tweeted about the issue, but this time to temper spirits. In response to Macron’s tweet, he said that the French position had not changed, that it remained the same, and that there would be no ban without an alternative.