Examples of future-oriented organic farming
A lot of yield on a small area – for organic farmers this should be possible with elaborated organic cultivation methods. Examples have been outlined at the conference “New concepts for an agro-ecological and future-oriented agriculture”. They were presented by the German foundation “Ökologie&Landbau” together with the network “Öko-Junglandwirte” and the University of Kiel.
Les jardins de la grelinette
Man instead of tractor
Les jardins de la grelinette are a small organic farm in Canada. There, Maude-Hélène and Jean-Martin Fortier have been cultivating one hectare of land for a good ten years, growing 40 varieties of vegetables that they market directly – and live well with. “The key to success is to move away from a tractor-oriented approach to a people-oriented approach,” said the Fortiers at the conference.
Their microfarm is one of the best-known examples of new agricultural concepts, “which have impressive effects due to their systemic approach. They are very productive on small areas and are called bio-intensive agriculture, market gardening or micro-farms,” writes the Stiftung Ökologie&Landbau (SÖL) for explanation. “Inspired by agricultural ecology and permaculture, they are economically profitable, ecologically valuable and socially respectful. Their low investment costs make these concepts particularly interesting for young people wishing to enter the agricultural sector.”
Ecological and profitable
Richard Perkins of the Swedish Ridgedale Farm presented techniques and approaches that make it possible to make small farms ecologically valuable and economically viable. “It is our responsibility to regenerate our landscape through small profitable farms that bring people back into farming,” said Perkins.
Support for small farmers
Maxime de Rostolan founded the organisation Fermes d’avenir five years ago. In France, this organisation supports agro-ecological smallholder initiatives through appropriate training formats, advisory services, model farms as well as lobbying and public relations work. (organic-market)