VI Conference

A Decade to improve the life of family farmers.


The General Assembly of the United Nations adopted the Decade of Family Farming 2019-2028 on 20 December 2017 in order to improve the position of family farmers in all five (5) continents. The declaration of the Decade ensures the continuity of the successful IYFF-2014 process by advancing the implementation of public policies and facilitating the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its SDGs. Now, it is up to us to successfully implement the Decade by seizing this enormous opportunity, the fruit of our labour.

The Decade for Family Farming is our opportunity to, collectively, achieve more and better public policies for Family Farming and defend existing ones; to be a major force behind the implementation of said policies; to make sure Family Farming is understood and recognized for its worth; to put people ahead of major interests; to build a better future in our rural areas and, also, in our cities.

Within this context, we are organising the VI Global Conference on Family Farming entitled: “A Decade to improve the lives of Family Farmers”. The event will be held between 25 and 29 March 2019 in the city of Derio-Bilbao, Basque Country, Spain. It will bring together representatives from Farmers Organisations and other Civil Society organisations, Governments, International Organisations, Research Centres and Cooperatives from across the five continents.

The VI Global Conference on Family Farming will be a preparatory event of the launching of the Decade, to be held in Rome weeks later. Both occasions are part of a process to build a solid, multi-stakeholder and participatory Agenda for the Decade of Family Farming.


The meeting will bring together representatives from various governments, agricultural organizations, international organizations (such as FAO and IFAD), National Family Farming Committees, rural development associations, NGOs, cooperatives and research centers from all five continents together.


The 5th Global Conference of the WRF, entitled LET’S BUILD THE FUTURE: Family Farming was held in Derio, Biscay, in 2015 and paved the way to implementing the successful IYFF+10, an initiative that has led to the adoption of the Decade of Family Farming 2019-2028.

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The objectives of the VI Global Conference are as follows:

  • Contribute to design the official Decade Agenda for the national, regional and global levels by developing quality inputs for the Action Plan of the Decade of Family Farming.
  • Facilitate dialogue, new partnerships and the involvement of new actors in the Decade (governments, farmers organizations, international organizations, rural associations, cooperatives, research centers, other CSOs, etc), to promote the implementation of the above mentioned Agenda.
  • Raise awareness on the fundamental importance of Family Farming for humanity and promote the Decade of Family Farming as a key tool for the SDGs fulfilment.
  • Encourage the development and implementation of public policies in favor of Family Farming that contribute to the achievement of the Decade’s agenda within the SDG framework.
  • Enhance mechanisms and platforms for policy dialogue, particularly the National Committees for Family Farming.
  • Strengthen Family Farming organizations through exchanges of knowledge, information and experience.


Venue: The Conference will be held in the Hotel Seminario Bilbao, in Derio (Basque Country, Spain).

Dates: From 25 to 29 March 2019.

– For more information about the Conference, please write to:

– For more information stay connected via


The program is tentative and will be updated regularly.

25 MARCH 2019

8:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Txorierri Hall

Exchange session between Family Farming Organisations.

Internal working session for farmers organizations.

26 MARCH 2019

8:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. Lezama Hall


Internal working session for women farmers.

10:45 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.

Coffee Break.

11:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. Txorierri Hall

IYFF+10 World Coordination Committee Meeting.

11:15 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Lezama Hall


Internal working session for young farmers.

1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.


3:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Txorierri Hall


Internal working session for NCFF members.

5:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Lezama Hall

ILC CBI Reference Group Meeting.

Internal working session.

27 MARCH 2019

8:45 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. Vidrieras Hall

Introductory Remarks on the Decade of Family Farming.

José María Zeberio – President of WRF.
Marcela Villarreal – Director, Partnerships Division, including a video message of Graziano Da Silva – Director General of FAO.
Ashwani Muthoo – Director of the Global Engagement and Multilateral Relations Division, on behalf of the President of IFAD.

9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. Vidrieras Hall

Keynote Presentations.

Esther Penunia – Secretary General of AFA.
Alberto Broch – Secretary General of COPROFAM.
Interaction with the audience.

10:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.Torre Hall

Coffee Break.

11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Vidrieras Hall

Roundtable Discussion: Youth and Women.

12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. Vidrieras Hall

Institutional Opening.

Iñigo Urkullu – President of the Basque Country Government.
José María Zeberio – President of WRF.
Josefa Leonel Sacko – Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture of the African Union (AU) Commission.
Mario Arvelo – President of the UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS).
Renato Alvarado Rivera – Minister of Agriculture and Livestock of Costa Rica (TBC).
Fernando Miranda – Secretary General of Agriculture and Food from the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food of Spain.
Leonard Mizzi – Head of Unit C1, DG DEVCO, European Commission.

1:30 p.m. Torre Hall

Group photo.

1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.


3:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Vidrieras Hall Lezama Hall Txorierri Hall Astintze Hall

Working Groups: Decade of Family Farming Action Plan.

28 MARCH 2019

07:30 a.m. – 08:45 a.m.

Implementation of the Decade.

Informal Breakfast between Government Representatives.
Closed session, observers under invitation only.

9:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. Vidrieras Hall

Keynote Presentation: Decade of Family Farming and SDGs.

Gabriel Ferrero – Director General of Sustainable Policies of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of Spain.

9:30 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. Vidrieras Hall

Roundtable Discussion: Wrap up from Working Groups.

11:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.Vidrieras Hall

WRF 20th Anniversary.

Tribute and future initiatives.

12:00 p.m. – 12:30 p.m.Torre Hall

Coffee Break.

12:30 p.m. – 1:45 p.m. Vidrieras Hall

Closing Remarks and Farewell.

Bittor Oroz Izaguirre – Vice-Secretary of Agriculture, Fisherie and Food Policies of the Basque Government.
Representative of the Parliamentary Alliance in favour of the Right to Food from the Phillippines. (TBC)
Joan Brady – International Coordination Committee of La Vía Campesina.
Arianna Giuliodori – Secretary General of WFO.
Oana Neagu – COPA-COGECA Director.
Lautaro Viscay – Technical Secretary of REAF-Mercosur.
Maite Peñacoba Etxebarria – Director General of Agriculture in the Provincial Government of Bizkaia.
Martin Uriarte – Vice-President of the WRF.

1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Torre Hall


3:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

Field visits.

Derio Agricultural Training School.
Barrenetxe Agri-Cooperative .
Garaia Agri-Cooperative.
La Ribera Food Market and Bilbao CityTour.

7:30 p.m.

Bus Departure to the Aspaldiko Restaurant, Loiu.

8:00 p.m.


Aspaldiko Restaurant, Loiu.

29 MARCH 2019

9:00 a.m. – 10:40 a.m. Lezama Hall

WRF Board meeting.

Internal session, observers under invitation only.

10:40 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.

Coffee Break.

11:15 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Lezama Hall

General Assembly.

Open to the public.

2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.


3:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Lezama Hall

Working Session: New WRF Board meeting.

Internal session, observers under invitation only.


Derio Agrarian High School
The Derio Agrarian High School is a public Vocational Training center, with a broad history that has made it a reference center within the field of agricultural education. It was founded in 1986 at the time when Vocational Training was extended as autonomous teaching throughout the country. It offers training to young students in subjects such as Forest Management and Natural Environment, Agroecological Production, Floristry etc.
The first part of the visit will be a brief introductory talk in which it will be explained the educational system of vocational training in the Basque Country in general, as well as the educational program that is taught in the Derio Agrarian High School in the 4 degrees (2 middle and 2 high). In the second part, there will be a visit to the facilities: classrooms, workshops and greenhouses.

Barrenetxe Agri-Cooperative
Barrenetxe is a cooperative of professional farmers producing traditional vegetables from the Basque Country, active since 1980.
They are pioneers in innovative techniques suitable for the sustainability of the rural environment. Barrenetxe has its farms spread along Bizkaia’s coast and inland in order to offer continuity to its productions throughout the year.
The visit will be to the farm located in Gatika (inland of Bizkaia) where a tour around its facilities will take place, both outdoors and in the greenhouse.

Garaia Agri-Cooperative
Garaia Agri-Cooperative develops its activity in the horticultural sector and the ornamental plants. Its activity is based on the commercialization and distribution of its members’ exploitations products.
It offers to their members modern commercial structures, in such a way that the added value derived from their activity directly affects them, making their farms more profitable economically and providing them with a better quality of life.

Bilbao city Tour + La Ribera Food Market
The “Mercado de la Ribera” is a market place in Bilbao city. It is located on the right bank of the Nervion estuary, next to the old quarter of the city. It has a commercial area of 10,000m2, which makes it the largest covered market in Europe. Inside it collects stalls selling different products, highlighting fresh food. It includes a section for the direct sale of products by local producers.
In the first part of the visit there will be a guided tour by bus through the most important touristic points of the city. Then, there will be a short guided tour around Casco Viejo (Old Town), ending at La Ribera Food Market.


REGISTRATION FEE – € 300 (21% VAT included)


Registration for the Conference includes access to the scientific programme, technical visits, documentation, coffee breaks, lunches and social events, depending on the programme.


If needed, funding to cover participation costs can be requested to the conference organization. The costs eligible to be funded are: inscription fee, travel and/or accommodation expenses (*). The application should be done through the online registration form.

The conference organization will review funding applications received. Funds will be distributed on a first come first serve basis.

If accepted, you will be notified via the email address provided in the online registration form.

(*) In case of applying for accommodation funding and accepted, the modality of accommodation provided will be shared rooms (twin or triple) at the hotel selected by the organization.


All changes and cancellations must be sent in writing to

Before 30 November 2018: 80% will be refunded.

Before 31 January 2019: 50% will be refunded.

As of 1 February 2019: no refunds will be issued.

All refunds will be issued after the Conference.



The event will be held at the Hotel Seminario Bilbao in Derio, Basque Country, Spain.

How to get there:

By car: 5-minute drive from the airport and 10-minute drive from Bilbao. Direct access from/to the highway.

By bus: Bizkaibus(available in English) Buses: A3250A3223A3517

By train: Euskotren. Train Kukullaga-Lezama (Stop: Derio).


Bilbao Airport> official hotels

The Conference Organization will make available a transfer service (collective) that will pick you up at the airport and drop you off at your hotel. This service has been organized according to your travel plan.

When you arrive at Bilbao airport, after collecting your luggage, someone from the organization will be waiting at the airport, carrying a sign with an image of the V Conference and the World Rural Forum. This person will indicate the place of departure of the transfer service.

If for any reason you cannot identify the person waiting for you at the airport or you need any assistance during your stay in Derio, please contact the Technical Secretariat of the Conference:
Alejandra Altamira +34 605 70 52 66.

Internal transfer services

Likewise, the organization of the Conference facilitates the transfer by bus from the official hotels to the Hotel Seminario Derio (during days 25, 26, 27 and 28) as well as to field visits and official dinner (28th).

Conference spaces:


Hotel Reception

Hospitality desk / Accreditations

Vidrieras Room


Dining room


Astintze room

Txorierri room

Lemaza room

Technical Secretariat

Other spaces:

If you want to place informative material of your organization, such as brochures or other elements, you can do so at the tables placed in the entrance hall to the Vidrieras Room.c


During the days of the Conference we will attend you at the Hospital Desk located next to the hotel reception.

At this point we will give you the materials of the Conference, as well as the accreditation that identifies you as a participant.

Please remember that the accreditation is personal and non-transferable and must be kept in a visible place at all times during the conference events (sessions and visits) in which you participate.

Operation hours:

  • Sunday 24 from 1:30pm to 8:30 pm.
  • Monday 25 from 07:30am to 8:30pm.
  • Tuesday 26 from 07:30am to 8:30pm.
  • Wednesday 27 from 07:30am to 2:30pm.

Technical Secretariat

Alejandra Altamira
+34 605 70 52 66


The plenary sessions, as well as some parallel sessions, will offer simultaneous translation into English, French, and Spanish. In the opening session there will also be simultaneous translation into Basque.

Important: To collect the translation devices it will be essential to provide an identification, which we will be returned at the return of the device.


There will be Wifi available in all the meeting rooms during the conference.

The username and password can be consulted in the posters available in all the meeting rooms.


The organization facilitates the reservation of accommodation for the attendees. Here we detail the recommended hotels. The prices per room are around 60-75 € / night.

Note: People whose accommodation costs are covered by the World Rural Forum will be accommodated in shared rooms.

Hoteles oficiales

Hotel Seminario Bilbao (3*) – Conference Venue

Calle Larrauri, 1

48160 Elexalde Derio (Bizkaia)

Tel: +34 944 65 97 00



Hotel The Park

Parque Tecnológico edificio 806, 48160 Derio, Bizkaia

Tel: +34 946 47 40 73


Hotel Loiu

Lastetxe Kalea, 24, 48180 Zabaloetxe, Bizkaia

Tel: +34 944 53 50 38


Hotel Sondika

Avanzada Errepidea, 2, 4, 48150 Asua-Lauroeta, Bizkaia

Tel: +34 946 40 25 24


There will be a daily shuttle service to the Hotel Seminario from these hotels.


On Sunday, March 24, breakfast, lunch and dinner for conference attendees hosted at the Hotel Seminario Derio, will be served in the Txorierri Room located on the 2nd floor.

The 25th, 26th, 27th and 28th, a series of lunches and dinners are planned (included in the conferences’ program), which will also serve as a meeting point between the Organization and Conference participants.

If you have any dietary requirements or other needs, and you have not yet informed, please let us know in advance.

Day 25Lunch2nd floor Hotel Seminario13:30 h
Day 26LunchDining room Hotel Seminario13:30 h
Day 27LunchHall Torre Hotel Seminario13:15 h
Day 28Lunch
Hall Torre Hotel Seminario
Bus departure to the Aspaldiko Restaurant from the Hotel Seminario
13:45 h
19:30 h.
Day 29Lunch2nd floor Hotel Seminario13:30 h.


  • Climate: Although the weather is unpredictable, temperatures between 15 and 25ºC are expected in Bizkaia at this time of year. Bringing a coat or similar warm apparel is recommended, especially for the nights.
  • Electrical voltage: In Spain, this is 220V and the plugs are the type with two round pins.
  • Time-zone: GMT + 1.
  • Return flights: Each participant will be responsible for their transfer back from the Hotel to the airport.
  • Currency: The only currency that can be used in the country is the EURO. Equivalence: 1 euro = 1.1 USD (1 USD = 0.9 euros). Credit and debit cards are commonly accepted.
  • Taxis in Derio and Bilbao:
    • Tel. Taxi Uribe: +34 944 80 09 09
    • Tel. Taxi Bilbao: +34 944 10 21 21
  • Practical dictionary:
    GraciasEskerrik askoThank youMerci
    Por favorMesedezPleaseS’il vous plaît
    Agua por favorUra mesedezWater, pleaseDe l’eau s’il vous plaît
    ¡Buen provecho!¡On egin!Enjoy your meal!Bon appétit!
    ¡Delicioso!¡Oso ona!Delicious!Délicieux!


FRM: Goizargi de las Heras: / +34 637 444 407

RoiKom: +34 652835385 / +34 620614732


Alberto Broch

Secretary General


MERCOSUR Confederation of Family Farming Organizations

Arianna Giuliodori

Secretary General


World Farmers´Organization

Ashwani Muthoo

Director, Global Engagement and Multilateral Relations Division


International Fund for Agricultural Development

Bittor Oroz Izaguirre



Agriculture, Fisherie and Food Policies of the Basque Government

Esther Penunia

Secretary General


Asian Farmers Association for Sustainable Rural Development

Fernando Miranda

Secretary General of Agriculture and Food


Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food of Spain

Gabriel Ferrero

General Director, Sustainable Development Policies


Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation

Iñigo Urkullu



Basque Government

Joan Brady

International Coordination Committee


La Vía Campesina

Josefa Leonel Sacko

Commissioner, Rural Economy and Agriculture


African Union

Laurato Viscay

Technical Secretary


Reunión Especializada de la Agricultura Familiar del Mercosur

Leonard Mizzi

Head of Unit, Directorate Planet and Prosperity


Directorate General for International Cooperation and Development, European Commission

Maite Peñacoba Etxebarria

Director General


Provincial Government of Bizkaia

Marcela Villarreal

Director, Division of Partnerships


Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations

Mario Arvelo



Committee on World Food Security

and Permanent Representative of Dominican Republic to FAO

Martin Uriarte



World Rural Forum

Oana Neagu



Committee of Professional Agricultural Organisations – General Confederation of Agricultural Cooperatives

Renato Alvarado Rivera


Costa Rica

Minister of Agriculture and Livestock

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Supported by

govierno vascoagencia vasca de cooperación para el desarrollo
ministerio de agricultura, alimentación y medio ambiente
agenda ebc 2030
international land coalition
diputación foral del Álava
diputación foral del Vizcaya
diputación foral del Gipuzkoa
laboral kutxa
euskadi coop
basque country