After three years of touring German cities, the FNL EventFam mobile has presented modern sustainable agriculture outside of Germany for the first time – at the Foire Agricole in Ettelbrück, Luxembourg. Read more…
EISA’s annual Farm Visits, held on 25 June 2013 in Belgium, allowed participants to experience modern sustainable agriculture in practice. read more…
New EISA Board and new Chairman of the Executive Committee take over
EISA (Brussels): Together with the French wine-grower Sylviane Martin-Pierrat and the German farmer Heinrich Kemper as Vice-Presidents and Nico Kass, a farmer from Luxemburg as Treasurer, Patrick Wrixon (UK) has been elected as member of the Board and as President of EISA. At the same time, Dr. Anton Kraus, General Manager of the national EISA member from Germany, FNL, has taken over as chairman of the EISA Executive Committee from his predecessor Dr. Gibfried Schenk.
The new EISA President Patrick Wrixon follows Tony Worth who has successfully chaired EISA for the last five years. Patrick runs a mixed sheep and arable farm in the Welsh Marches. As a graduate in agriculture – and following his commitment to the holistic approach of Integrated Farming – he has invested considerable time and effort in enhancing wildlife, improving efficiency and increasing the production and use of renewable resources on his farm.
As Sylviane Martin-Pierrat (FARRE), Heinrich Kemper (FNL) and Nico Kass (FILL), Patrick Wrixon (LEAF) has been involved in the work of the respective national EISA member organisation for years. “We must not get tired of demonstrating to the public, to representatives of the media, to administrators and to politicians, that Integrated Farming is a truly sustainable approach, which allows for the efficient production of food, feed, fibre and energy for a continuously growing world population and also takes good care of nature and the environment”, said Patrick when pointing out his objectives for the years to come. He expressed serious hope that in the context of the current CAP reform, EU politicians will recognise the holistic system of IF as one of the best ways to achieve sustainability in agriculture.
The European Initiative for Sustainable Development in Agriculture (EISA), founded in 2001, is an association of national farmers organisations from seven EU Member States: FARRE (Forum de l’Agriculture Raisonnée Respectueuse de L’Environnement, France), FILL (Fördergemeinschaft Integrierte Landbewirtschaftung, Luxemburg), FNL (Fördergemeinschaft Nachhaltige Landwirtschaft, Germany), GOSZ (Grain Producers’ Organization Hungary), LEAF (Linking Environment and Farming, United Kingdom), ÖAIP (Österreichische Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Integrierten Pflanzenschutz, Austria) and OiB (Odling i Balans, Sweden). EISA and its members promote Integrated Farming on a European level.
Integrated Farming in Practise – EISA Farm Visit, this time hosted by the French EISA member FARRE, provided valuable insights in modern, sustainable and efficient agriculture. …Read more
Sustainable Development on a domain scale: On Domain Latour, one station of the EISA-FARRE Farm Visit to Burgundy in May 2012, a project for landscape development on a domain scale was presented. Read more…
Forum Environnement-11: Further information about the EISA-FARRE Farm Visit to Burgundy in May 2012 and examples of key activities of national EISA members can be found here…
Viticulture, Landscape and Functional Biodiversity presentation by Maarten van Helden Read more…
This FNL-Farm Visit is one in the series of field trips within the initiative „Innovation & Natural Environment“ under the umbrella of the Association for the Promotion of Sustainable Agriculture e.V. (FNL). The European Initiative for Sustainable Development in Agriculture e.V. (EISA) is the partner organisation. Read more
EISA-Workshop during International Green Week in Berlin, Germany
Berlin, 27 January 2012:The workshop “Building public trust and understanding of farming and food – what more needs to be done?” took place on the EventFarm (ErlebnisBauernhof, fair hall 3.2) of International Green Week in Berlin on 26 January. Following an invitation by EISA, the European Initiative for Sustainable Development in Agriculture, representatives of agricultural organisations from Germany, England, France, Luxembourg, Austria and Sweden presented and discussed how successful agricultural PR can be set up. The Parliamentary Secretary of
State of the German Federal Ministry for Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection, Peter Bleser, and Pekka Pesonen, Secretary General of COPA-COGECA, the united voice of European farmers and their cooperatives, participated in the event.
Vice-chairman Heinrich Kemper of EISA summarized the central statements of the discussion: “Agriculture must be careful not to present itself in the light of glorified romanticism. Otherwise, the gap will grow between reality and the images in the heads of consumers. Our business must not be ashamed to be modern and innovative. The opposite is true, as being modern and innovative must be communicated again and again, openly and with pride“.
Heinrich Kemper identified the following conclusions from the workshop:
- Communication of the agricultural business can only be successful when as many partners as possible act together. Secondly, platforms and joint projects such as the ErlebnisBauernhof of International Green Week or visits of the “Erlebnis: Bauernhof mobile“ in bigger cities must be established and must be used to communicate with factual information as well as emotions. Just passing on drydata and unemotional facts will not be enough to reach consumers successfully.
- On the one hand, farmers have to try to keep up with technological innovations such as precision farming for example, but on the other hand they must try to make these developments and innovations transparent and plausible to consumers.
Finally, Kemper pointed out the importance of Integrated Farming as a holistic guideline: “If we want to feed more and more humans on this planet with the restricted resources which we have, we will need an intelligent agriculture. We will need to „set out for Green Growth“ – the motto of this year’s ErlebnisBauernhof – where this workshop is taking place, and we will definitely need progress through sustainable innovation!“
The ErlebnisBauernhof in fair hall 3.2 of International Green Week is a joint project of Deutscher Bauernverband (DBV – German Farmers Union), the association information.medien.agrar (i.m.a – information, media, agriculture) and FNL (Fördergemeinschaft Nachhaltige Landwirtschaft – Association for the Promotion of Sustainable Agriculture), with FNL acting as responsible coordinator of the ErlebnisBauernhof. More than 50 other partners are involved as well. The Landwirtschaftliche Rentenbank supports the ErlebnisBauernhof, and agrarheute.com is the official media partner. Light, sound and video systems of the ErlebnisBauernhof are supported by audio+frames Veranstaltungstechnik GmbH. More information is accessible via http://www.fnl-erlebnisbauernhof.de.
coordination office ErlebnisBauernhof
c/o Fördergemeinschaft Nachhaltige Landwirtschaft e.V. (FNL)
press spokesperson FNL
tel.: 030 8866355-40, fax: 030 8866355-90
(European dimension of the `Charta for Agriculture and Consumers` of the German Federal Ministry for Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection)” in Berlin on 26 January 2012.
In this workshop, EISA members presented and discussed various communication activities – all designed to inform the public about modern, sustainable agriculture in Europe.
Awareness, innovation and thorough balance of ecology and economy Integrated Farming points the way for future agriculture
EISA (Brussels): The annual EISA Farmers Exchange, hosted by Odling i Balans, the Swedish association for the promotion of sustainable agriculture, took place in Southern Sweden this year. “The event gave excellent insights in modern, efficient, and environmentally friendly agriculture again”, said Tony Worth, chairman of EISA. “The Farmers Exchange has taken us to Sweden, France, Luxemburg, the UK, Germany and Austria in past years – and even though we have not left Central Europe, it is amazing to see how agriculture needs to respect different regions, different climatic and growing conditions as well as diverse marketing opportunities. The flexibility of Integrated Farming to adapt practices according to site and situation is a clear “sustainability advantage” of this production system”, Worth concluded:
For Sven Norup, Chairman of Odling i Balans, there is one distinctive feature of Integrated Farming (IF): “Farmers who follow this holistic system do not just act according to the relevant legislation: It is the IF planning, management and evaluation approach which allows to go beyond legal requirements, to develop perspectives and to improve everyday practice continuously.”
During the two day event, farmers and representatives of IF and other organisations from the agricultural chain visited three farms in Southern Sweden and the Swedish University ofAgricultural Sciences at Alnarp, putting a particular focus on environmental issues such as climate effects, manure handling, bio-energy, nitrogen efficiency and reduced tillage. Besides EISA members and farmers, EU-representatives and other interested stakeholders are invited to participate in this regular Farmers Exchange.
The European Initiative for Sustainable Development in Agriculture (EISA), founded in 2001, is an association of national farmers organisations from six EU Member States. National member organisations are FARRE (Forum de l’Agriculture Raisonnée Respectueuse de L’Environnement, France), FILL (Fördergemeinschaft Integrierte Landbewirtschaftung, Luxemburg), FNL (Fördergemeinschaft Nachhaltige Landwirtschaft, Germany), LEAF (Linking Environment and Farming, United Kingdom), ÖAIP (Österreichische Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Integrierten Pflanzenschutz, Austria) and OiB (Odling i Balans, Sweden), all with the common aim to develop and promote Integrated Farming on a European level.
EISA, the European Association for the Promotion of Sustainable Agriculture, and their national members very much appreciate the opportunity to contribute to the development of the future Common Agricultural Policy. EISA are looking forward to a debate which in the end will allow to achieve a stable and predictable legal framework
- for sustainable, efficient, innovative and competitive European agriculture,
- ensuring adequate incomes for European farmers,
- supporting farmers in their continuous delivery of a multitude of public benefits.
A clear focus must be put on securing high quality food supplies for roughly half a billion EU-citizens and also increasing the supply of environmentally friendly renewable energy and raw materials. In order to strengthen rural areas in Europe by generating jobs, income and positive economic development, agriculture must be sustainable and productive – and use and at the same time conserve our natural resources for coming generations.
EISA and their members highlight the importance of Integrated Farming (IF) as a holistic all-farm approach and guideline for further development of European agriculture. Beyond the continuously growing world population and the globally increasing demand for food, feed and renewable energy, there still are some areas of global concern: climate change with higher temperatures, lower water availability and the invasion of new pests, and environmental issues such as the conservation of biodiversity, the protection of ground and surface water and the conservation of soils. Integrated Farming addresses these issues as well as societal demands as decisive elements of sustainability.
With regard to the future development of the Common Agricultural Policy, the EISA European Integrated Farming Framework describes guidelines, practices and suggestions for agricultural production, covering a wide range of aspects such as “Organisation, Management and Planning”, “Human and Social Capital”, “Energy Use and Efficiency”, “Water Use and Protection”, “Climate Change and Air Quality”, “Soil Management”, “Crop Nutrition”, “Crop Protection”, “Animal Husbandry and Animal Health”, “Landscape, Wildlife and Biodiversity” and “Resource Management, Product Storage and Waste Disposal”. This allows for practical implementation of an all-farm approach rather than merely considering individual farming practices.
The EISA IF Framework is designed as a tool to be used on two different levels:
- For the individual farmer (farm owner, farm manager), the EISA Framework offers a comprehensive management tool which helps to further raise awareness, to continually improve everyday practice on farm and to achieve progress in all dimensions of sustainable development.
- For politics and administration all over Europe, the EISA Framework presents the basis for common understanding which can help to effectively shape legislative incentives and measures.
For the Integrated Farming concept, a clear and unbureaucratic legal CAP framework is needed. However, this CAP framework must leave the flexibility for farmers all over Europe to act according to their given site and situation. Hence, education, training, and capable advisory services must be understood as prerequisites for practical implementation. Only with these prerequisites, European farmers are capable to be productive, resource efficient and environmentally friendly at the same time. Last but not least, research in further innovations must be seen as decisive tool for sustainable development and hence as one element of future CAP, too.
EISA – the association
The European Initiative for Sustainable Development in Agriculture (EISA) was founded with the common aim of developing and promoting Integrated Farming throughout Europe. EISA members also help create a better public understanding of agriculture through a network of demonstration farms. EISA brings farmers and consumers together to raise awareness of how farmers are working in harmony with nature to produce high quality, safe food and renewable resources with environmental and social care.
As an organisation EISA works closely with EU Institutions and other stakeholders to contribute to the development of EU agricultural and environmental policies. With regard to future CAP, EISA and their members are willing to contribute actively to the further process of developing the CAP as a “corridor” for sustainable development in European agriculture.