Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Entente Florale Competition for 2021 has been postponed until 2022.
Dr Rüdiger Paul Kirsten, President of the Association Européene pour le Fleurissement et le Paysage (AEFP Europe) has announced that the 2021 Entente Florale Competition has been postponed until the summer of 2022. The decision was made by the AEFP Board at their meeting on March 3rd. Reasons for the decision include the continued uncertainty in relation to the control of the COVID-19 Pandemic throughout Europe. This has impacted on travel, mentoring and the preparation of entries.
After an unbroken period of 45 years, this will be the second year that the competition does not take place. The loss of continuity will disappoint many people in the participant countries but protecting everybody’s health is of prime importance. In addition, the normal level of mentoring and preparation of the participant communities was not possible this year, because of the continuing need to control the spread of the virus and make adequate provision for social distancing.
Several options for a scaled down version of the competition for 2021 were considered, but following consultations with communities in participant countries, it was clear that a majority favoured the format of an on-site visit rather than an online assessment. It was also hoped that delaying the decision might coincide with more positive news on control of the virus generally.
In the absence of such news and based on Covid Data received from member countries, it appeared there were too many risks compared with the number of benefits that would be achieved.
Despite the ongoing difficulties in Europe, there is hope for a better future and our family of Entente Florale communities continue to be a beacon of light enhancing European unity, collaboration, societal healing, and community well-being. The Competition is recognised now more than ever and will be crucial in pivoting society towards renewal and improved health and well-being.
Over the coming months the AEFP plans to enhance contacts and engagement with EFE Participant Communities across Europe through Social Media, Facebook, Instagram and the Entente Florale Website, zoom meetings etc. This will facilitate preparations for a renewed and re-invigorated competition in 2022. Existing entrants for 2021 will be able to go forward for adjudication in 2022 and it will be possible for each country to designate up to 3 entries for the enlarged and renewed 2022 competition. It is also hoped to have a successful Awards Presentation as previously planned, in Balatonfüred, Hungary in September 2022.