News

Organic Norway and Nordvegans!

IMG_2923 Anita Land

Dr Adrian Evans and Dr Ulrich Schmutz visited two research partners of Organic-PLUS in Norway. Firstly, NORSOK the Organic Research Centre and Organic Garden (see picture of garden) for Norway in Tingvoll on the Norwegian Fjord coast south of Trondheim. Secondly, in central Oslo the Consumer Research Institute (SIFO) at HIOA, University College of Applied Sciences in Oslo and Akerhus.

Both gave presentations on CAWR and the Organic-PLUS project at the two locations and exchanged ideas about research with a non-EU member country. It was interesting to find out how a non-EU country relates to EU regulation, e.g. the EU organic farming legislation. Within the next 4 years of the Organic-PLUS project will further investigate this. In addition, the research led by our partner SIFO is into understanding organic consumer attitudes to contentious inputs like peat, antibiotics and synthetic vitamins. But also asking now new diet trends, like Nordvegans, might affect organic consumption.

 

NORSOK Tingvoll https://www.norsok.no/en/

SIFO https://www.hioa.no/eng/About-HiOA/Centre-for-Welfare-and-Labour-Research/SIFO

Nordvegan https://nordvegan.com

 

Mainstreaming Agroecology in horticultural science

At the 30th  International Horticulture Congress (12-16 August 2018, Istanbul, Turkey) organised by International Society for Horticultural Science (ISHS) Agroecology as a science got a big boost!

The  2nd International Symposium on “Organic Horticulture for Wellbeing of the Environment and Population” was held with a large audience. In addition, a Short Training Course on Organic Agriculture was hosteda workshop on the discussion of Soil and Soilless Organic Production Systems, and a workshop on Agroecology and Education: Socio-ecological Resilience to Climate Change. Prof. Dr Uygun Aksoy (Chair of the Scientific Committee, and in partner in Organic-PLUS organised them and helped to get agroecology science a bigger role in international horticulture research. With the election of Prof. Dr Yüksel Tüzel as next ISHS president the society has now a leader with deep understanding of organic horticulture.

To add to the growing role the current commission on ‘Organic Horticulture’ will be expanded and renamed ‘Agroecology and Organic Farming Systems’ (this is still within horticultural science) and more working groups on organic vegetables, organic temperate and tropical fruit and agroecology will be added to the existing working groups to respond to the rising academic and practical interest in this work.

 

Speakers at the Agroecology workshop are shown above (Left to right): Prof. Reza Ardakani (Iran), Dr. Ulrich Schmutz (United Kingdom), Prof. Beatrix Alsanius (Sweden), Prof. Martine Dorais (Canada), Prof. Uygun Aksoy (Turkey) and Prof. Maria Claudia Dussi (Argentina).

ORC

The Organic Research Centre (ORC) have joined the consortium of Organic-PLUS, the €4.1m CAWR-led EU Horizon 2020 project to phase out contentious inputs from organic agriculture led by Dr Ulrich Schmutz. The ORC is an independent research organisation for the development of organic and agroecological food production and land management approaches. As part of Organic-PLUS, ORC will be working on alternatives  to synthetically derived vitamins and antibiotics given to livestock and also on replacements for the non-organic animal bedding often used in organic systems. A participatory research design with UK organic dairy farmers will be used.