Posted on March 15, 2013 by Dirk Roep
Under the heading of Grassroots sciences St. Otherwise has organised a new series to debate the agro-ecology approach, see the website for the programme and to make a reservation.
Monday, March 18 will be the next event, called The power of agro-ecology. This is part of the Rode Hoed debate series ‘It is the Food Stupid’. Venue: Forum building, Wageningen.
The agro-ecology movement is gaining momentum worldwide. Family farmers, sometimes in collaboration with researchers, have successfully developed agro-ecological innovations that use local resources and work with nature to strengthen production systems, increase farmer autonomy and maintain productivity. This makes farming more resilient, and less dependent on expensive external inputs such as chemical fertilizer and pesticides. What has agro-ecology achieved? Can it feed the world? What choices can we make to give it a fair chance? And what challenges are there for Wageningen University? Irene Cardoso (professor of soil science and vice chair Brazilian Agroecology Association) and Tom Saat (organic farmer and winner of the 2012 Ekoland Innovation Prize) share their insights and experiences. You are invited for a drink afterwards. Follow it live at http://wurtv.wur.nl/. Find out more on Facebook.
Filed under: Agriculture, Food, Rural Development | Tagged: Agro-ecology, grassroots science, It is the food stupid, Otherwise, Rode Hoed | Leave a Comment »
Posted on March 12, 2013 by Dirk Roep
Profitable organic farming is a contribution of colleague Ina Horlings the ‘The Broker online‘ blog on food security. The Broker has four interesting blogs from a manyfold of people across the world.
Filed under: Agriculture, Food, Policy, Regional Development, Research, Rural Development | Tagged: Food security, organic farming, The Broker | Leave a Comment »
Posted on March 1, 2013 by Dirk Roep
From today on, March 1, the documentary ‘A Place At The Table: one nation. underfed‘ on food insecrurity in the USA is launched:
50 million people in the U.S.-one in four children-don’t know where their next meal is coming from, despite our having the means to provide nutritious, affordable food for all Americans. Directors Kristi Jacobson and Lori Silverbush examine this issue through the lens of three people who are struggling with food insecurity: Barbie, a single Philadelphia mother who grew up in poverty and is trying to provide a better life for her two kids; Rosie, a Colorado fifth-grader who often has to depend on friends and neighbors to feed her and has trouble concentrating in school; and Tremonica, a Mississippi second-grader whose asthma and health issues are exacerbated by the largely empty calories her hardworking mother can afford.
Their stories are interwoven with insights from experts including sociologist Janet Poppendieck, author Raj Patel and nutrition policy leader Marion Nestle; ordinary citizens like Pastor Bob Wilson and teachers Leslie Nichols and Odessa Cherry; and activists such as Witness to Hunger’s Mariana Chilton, Top Chef’s Tom Colicchio and Oscar®-winning actor Jeff Bridges.
Ultimately, A Place at the Table shows us how hunger poses serious economic, social and cultural implications for our nation, and that it could be solved once and for all, if the American public decides-as they have in the past-that making healthy food available and affordable is in the best interest of us all. See more at: http://www.magpictures.com/aplaceatthetable/#sthash.mcOOhFcB.dpuf
Filed under: Food | Tagged: A Place At The Table, Documentary, film, Food insecurity, Hunger, USA | 2 Comments »
Posted on February 26, 2013 by Dirk Roep
Do you want to know what the EU Common Agriculture Policy is about? Have a look at the website 50 year of CAP, available in all EU languages.
Filed under: Agriculture, Policy, Rural Development | Tagged: Common Agricultural Policy, EU policies | Leave a Comment »
Posted on February 22, 2013 by Dirk Roep
This is a 16-min video about the developments in farming in Long Island. Having great soils and an agriculture history, the setting lends itself for farming activities. However, land prices are a clear barrier for newcomers. The video also talks about new farmers trying to make it in the agricultural world from making a living, facing their romanticized preconceptions of life as a farmer, to breaking stereotypes of who can be a farmer.
Filed under: Agriculture, Rural Development | Tagged: Long Island, New farmers, video clip | Leave a Comment »
Posted on January 30, 2013 by Dirk Roep
Monday March 11, 2013 the course Origing Food: a market for identity will start again.
The main aim of the course is to provide for a broad and scientific understanding of the growing importance of food products with an indication of origin within the globalising agro-food system. The course is obligatory in the specialisation Gastronomy of the Master Food Technology. No specific prerequisite knowledge is asked. The course is open to students from other Masters. The different educational backgrounds is stimulating for multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary study of OPFs in groups. Language of instruction and examination is English.
Food products with a geographical indication are becoming more important worldwide, both in economic and cultural terms. In the course a distinction is made between Origing Food Products with a protected geographical indication (PDO, PGI or TSG) based on EU-regulations such as Parma ham, Boerenleidse kaas, Café de Colombia and not officially acknowledged Origin Food Products locally sourced by e.g. restaurants, shops or online box schemes.
The course deals with a range of questions on OFPs organised in five themes: 1) Linking people, place and product: the construction of distinctiveness; 2) Regulation and legislation; 3) Marketing and branding; 4) Sustainability impact; 5) Consumers’ appreciation, regional gastronomy and food tourism.
The course consists of a combination of lectures, group assignments to study some Origin Food Products more in detail and a gastronomic excursion, often seen the higlight of the course.
Students interested in the course can ask for the Course outline for this year. Contactperson: Dirk.Roep@wur.nl
Filed under: Education, Food | Tagged: Education, Origin food products | Leave a Comment »
Posted on November 2, 2012 by Dirk Roep
In the light of the debate on how to feed the world’s growing population and what type of agriculture is needed, a video by the Food Myth Busters takes a firm position: we do not need corporate agriculture, actually we are even better of without it. In the video they demystify claims upholded by corporate businesses with some facts. I’m however sure that these are not the facts the CEO of Wageningen UR has in mind when proclaiming that further intensification of agriculture is needed (in fact he is arguing for a further industrialization of agriculture according the famous Dutch model and promoting a joint venture of corporate business and science, ergo: corporate science) to secure food provision for 9 billion people. Have a look yourself and make up your mind:
Filed under: Agriculture, Food | Tagged: Agriculture, food myths, Food security, industrial agriculture | Leave a Comment »
Posted on October 9, 2012 by Dirk Roep
Op 4 oktober heeft een groep van 10 boeren (ook wel de Groep Schipluiden genoemd) ondersteund door CLM op uitnodiging van staatssecretaris Bleker advies uitgebracht over een nieuwe opzet van het nieuwe Agrarisch Natuurbeheer vanaf 2013. De aanbiedingsbrief en het advies zijn te vinden op de website over de aanstaande hervorming van het Gemeenschappelijke Landbouw Beleid (GLB). Die hervorming is relevant is voor de toekomstige financiering van het nieuwe ANB en de invulling van maatregelen om de landbouw te vergroenen.
Kern van het advies luidt:
Het agrarische natuurbeheer kan in de toekomst volstaan met drie eenvoudige pakketten, uitgevoerd door zelfsturende collectieven. Dat is de conclusie van een groep van tien boeren die op uitnodiging van Staatssecretaris Henk Bleker een advies heeft geformuleerd over de toekomst van het agrarisch natuurbeheer. De drie pakketten beschrijven het beheer voor drie biotopen: grasland, akker en kleinschalig landschap. Daardoor ontstaan geschikte leefgebieden voor allerlei soorten vogels, amfibieën, insecten, vleermuizen en andere zoogdieren. Ook voor de soorten waar Nederland internationale verplichtingen voor heeft.
ANB in nieuwe opzet kan deel uit maken van de beoogde vergroening van de landbouw en de certificering van vergroeningsmaatregelen met oog op vergoedingen vanuit EU-beleid:
De boeren zijn van mening dat certificering kansen biedt om de landbouw te vergroenen (pijler 1) met een breed keuzemenu van duurzaamheidsmaatregelen voor meerdere EU thema’s (biodiversiteit, water, bodem, klimaat, energie). Want zo stelde Wim Stegeman (akkerbouwer Flevoland): “vergroening gaat om verduurzaming en dat is breder dan natuur”. Het agrarisch natuurbeheer kan onderdeel uitmakenvan zo’n brede certificering.
Filed under: Agriculture, Multifunctionality, Policy | Tagged: Agrarisch natuurbeheer, Certificering, Gemeenschappelijk Landbouwbeleid (GLB), Groep Schipluiden, vergroening | Leave a Comment »
Posted on October 3, 2012 by Dirk Roep
With Food4all Otherwise and Boerengroep offer a critical perspective to food security and sustainable farming next to the yearly Food4you festival. Food4all starts on Thursday 11 October with a lecture on Land grabs and the right to food, next an expert panel on Feeding the world on Friday 12 October, a regional farmers market on Saturday and it ends with the Dutch premiere of the film ‘Crops in the Future’ on Tuesday 16 October. Food4all is organized in colaboration with ILEIA and SOS Faim (Belgium).
Celebrate food and farming in Wageningen, the Netherlands! Food4all is a festival that takes you on a journey through sustainable family farming, agro-ecology and the right to food. The Food4All festival is a critical supplement to the “Food4you festival”. The festival seeks to provide a critical perspective on global food security, and give voice sustainable alternatives.
Look at http://grassrootsscience.nl/ for the programme.
Filed under: Agriculture, Food, Policy, Rural Development | Tagged: Agro-ecology, Boerengroep, film, Food security, food sovereignty, Food4all, ILEIA, Otherwise, sustainable agriculture | 1 Comment »
Posted on September 26, 2012 by Dirk Roep
Feeding the world in a sustainable way is vehemently debated these days. In international fora the debate is not just about how to increase food production to feed the world’s growing population but also whether increasing food production is adressing the key issue of the relation between poverty and hunger. Increasing food production is not a neutral matter. Although some voices like to put it that way to sustain their claim that ‘facts’ show that their solution is the only right one. A solution is never neutral just because of the combination of technological and institutional means and the social and environmental impact it has. This is not new at all all. The impact of the (first) Green Revolution has been heavely disputed and this socalled neutralness of technology has been key issue in the massive techology and innovation studies of last decades. One cannot simply ignore the wider impact of technological fixes in the debate about how to provide the world’s population in a sustainable way.
In an editorial Eric Holt-Gimenez, Executive Director of Food First / Institute for Food and Development Policy (www.foodfirst.org) in response to a recent study in Nature has added a contribution to this ongoing debate. He argues that there is a difference between between producing more food and ending hunger. Read his editorial at on what kind of agriculture can best solve the problem of the growing number of hungry people: agroecology or conventional industrial agriculture at http://www.agriculturesnetwork.org/magazines/global/farmer-organisations/opinion-eric-holt-gimenez or at Nourshing the planet (the weblog of the Worldwatch Institute). One can also see video of a lecture on Food movements, agroecology, and the future of food and farming.
The Christensen Fund made an interesting infographics evaluating the major differences between agroecology and industrial agriculture:
Filed under: Agriculture, Food, Rural Development | Tagged: Agro-ecology, Eric Holt-Gimenez, Food, Food security, food sovereignty, sustainable agriculture | 1 Comment »