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Will the Green Deal ban growing your own vegetables and fruit? EC: “completely baseless” claim

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As part of the European Green Deal, “food farming for own consumption is to be banned,” says an article believed by many Internet users. The European Commission denies these claims. The misleading message was promoted by, among others: members of the Confederation. We checked how widely it spread on the Internet.

We show what is true and what is false

We verify fake news, check data, and analyze information from the Internet

“The fallowing will not be obligatory, starting this year,” Prime Minister Donald Tusk announced on Friday, March 15 on social media. This is the result of talks with the head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, he explained. Before On that day, Janusz Wojciechowski, European Union Commissioner for Agriculture, announced that the European Commission would propose legislative changes to the European Green Deal.

These changes are the result of farmers' protests in Poland and other European Union countries. They postulate, among others: derogation from the provisions proposed by the European Commission as part of the European Green Deal. This is a regulatory package announced by the European Commission in 2019, which is intended to help transform the EU into a modern, resource-efficient and competitive economy, and ultimately lead to climate neutrality of member states by 2050.

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There is a lot of misinformation circulating on social media about this reform package and the consequences of its implementation. One narrative says that in the EU “food farming for one's own needs will be banned.”

“It is forbidden to grow your own vegetables and fruit. The 'Green Deal' is entering allotments and gardens!” – says the title text published on the Portal-polski.pl website on March 10. It publishes information about politics, celebrities, finances, sports and interesting facts.

In the lead, the author of the text states: “The European Union is preparing another regulation from the 'green deal' series. This time, to save the planet, it is urgent to ban the cultivation of vegetables and fruit for one's own needs” (original spelling).

A misleading article published on March 10 on the website Portal-polski.plPortal-polski.pl

And he continues: “Food farming for one's own needs is to be banned in the European Union.” He argues that “this type of activity is supposed to be harmful to the planet and contribute to global warming.” However, it does not provide any source that would confirm such plans of the European Union, or that such proposals are to be included in the European Green Deal.

Confederation MPs: “Madmen rule in Brussels!”, “Apparently growing chives in a private garden is harmful to the planet”

The article gained considerable popularity on social media. It was quoted or referred to by many Internet users, including two MPs from the Confederation.

MP Andrzej Zapałowski wrote on website – he stated in a post published on March 12 (original spelling of all posts). He linked to an article from Portal-polski.pl.

MP Grzegorz Płaczek w recording published on the same day on the TikTok platform referred to the same article. “Brussels is not stopping! Despite mass protests by farmers across Europe, further regulations are coming, which this time will not only hit garden owners, but also people who grow carrots on their own balconies,” MP Płaczek said to the camera.

Publications on social media by Confederation MPs Andrzej Zapałowski and Grzegorz Płaczek on March 12, 2024.X.com, TikTok.com

“Work is underway to ban food farming for one's own needs in the European Union. Apparently, growing chives in a private garden or on one's balcony is harmful to the planet and contributes to global warming,” he continued. Then a screenshot of the text from Portal-polski.pl appears in the frame.

Over a million reach on Facebook, hundreds of thousands of views

The article was shared by many Internet users on X and Facebook.

“If farmers give up, we're done” – he wrote On March 11, one of the users of website X. In the post about, he linked to the text on Portal-polski.pl and attached a screenshot. The entry has been viewed over 220,000 times. times. “The Green Deal also includes a ban on growing crops in your own gardens” – we read in the next post from March 11. A screenshot of the text is also attached here. The post has been viewed over 200,000 times. times (original spelling of all entries).

“The question is fundamental. Why are we in this mess? Stockholm syndrome?” – he wrote On March 12, one of the Internet users posted on X. The post was accompanied by a fragment of the article in question: “Food farming for one's own needs is to be banned in the European Union. This type of activity is said to be harmful to the planet and contribute to global warming.” The post has been viewed 91.5 thousand times. times.

Posts from social media with fragments of articles about the alleged ban on growing your own crops.TVN24

“That's true???” – asked another Internet user on X.com on March 12 and further quoted a fragment of the article. A link to the text in question was attached to the post. The post has been viewed 79,000 times. times.

The article about the alleged ban was linked to in many posts on Facebook pages. On March 11, there were, among others: to: “attention food from Ukraine“, “Anonymous Info Army Poland“, “Turn on your thinking“. According to the CrowdTangle tool, the reach of all Facebook posts linking to the text on Portal-polski.pl is over 1.13 million users (as of March 15, 2024).

“Buhahaha, they'll have to take me out in handcuffs to give up my garden and greenhouse.”

Many Internet users were outraged by the alleged idea of ​​the EU. “Maybe it's time to all unite and join the farmers and not wait for them to win”; “There will be such tribulation that the living will envy the dead”; “My garden, my business”; “They can kiss me! No one will tell me what I can and cannot do in my garden! Regards”; “There are approximately 1 million plots of land in Poland. That's approximately 4 million plot owners, we need to connect with farmers and plow Wiejska and Brussels,” commented Facebook users. Dark visions of the future appeared on the X website: “the idea is to lead the masses through hunger, following the example of Hitler and Stalin”; “I predict the black market of vegetables and fruits. Fruit and vegetable dens liquidated by the anti-plant police.” Just like on Facebook, users announced resistance to the supposedly upcoming regulations: “Buhahaha, they'll have to take me out in handcuffs to give up my garden and greenhouse.”

However, a large part of website X users doubted these reports. “What source of information?”; “Sciema”, “This website and 'article' look as credible as I did during the debate on the nuances of pre-school education in Trinidad and Tobago”; “Polish or Russian portal? Because I had doubts. A short article without specific information or sources, with linguistic errors…” – they wrote.

However, one of the Konkret24 readers asked us to verify the reports from Portal-polski.pl. It turns out that they have no confirmation. The European Commission also denies them.

European Commission: 'completely baseless' claims

Are the European Union's alleged plans to ban the cultivation of crops for its own needs for climate reasons true? On March 13, the European Commission press office told Konkret24 that these claims were “completely unfounded” (bold from the editor).

“There is absolutely no prohibition or intention to prohibit home gardening and food production for personal use under the European Green Deal or under any other EU policy area. European citizens are free to undertake these activities,” explains the EC press office.

The Konkret24 editorial team did not find reliable sources confirming the alleged reports about a planned ban on growing food for one's own needs. The fact-checking portal also did not reach them Demagoguewho also investigated the case.

Reports that the EU allegedly wants to ban the growing of fruit and vegetables in private gardens are not new. In 2022, they were verified by the fact-checking editorial staff Corrective. At that time, the alleged ban was not linked to the European Green Deal.

At the beginning of March, fake news circulated on Polish social media that the World Economic Forum (WEF) “is calling on governments to ban society from growing its own food.” The argument for this was supposed to be research proving that “the 'carbon footprint' of home-made food is 'destroying the planet'.” This message we verified on Konkret24 on March 10. Probably fake news about the WEF's alleged request was used to create a new disinformation message about the European Green Deal.

Main photo source: Shutterstock

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