In the previous Newsletter we wrote about the structure of the organization Terre de Liens in France. We have been asked to give further information about the structure at European level. The European network that has developed includes a number of different organizations in various European countries, including Italy.
Without claiming to be in any way exhaustive, we are pleased to introduce the best-known ones here, and we invite readers to look at their websites to obtain more information about their activities, projects and structures.
Terre-en-vue has a similar structure to the French one (NGO, cooperative, foundation) and operates in the French-speaking part of the country. It is associated with the Flemish-language
Land-In-Zich Main objective: to halt the flight from the land and make access to farming easier especially for younger people.
Regionalwert AG (RWAG) is a citizen company that supports the development of organic food production in the Freiburg am Breisgau area. Funds are collected in the form of shares and invested in organic farms. The land that is bought cannot be sold on and the shareholders are not paid.
Land Trust The organization includes producers, processors and consumers of organic products. It has been given large areas of land to be used for organic production, providing access to future farmers and maintaining close links with consumers.
Biodynamic Land Trust has a similar approach but the land is used for biodynamic cultivation. It accepts gifts, donations, sustainable investments and bequests, and bases itself on the principle that the land should be managed as a good that belongs to the whole of humanity. Tablehurst and Plaw Hatch Community Farms is a 200 ha farm – managed as a cooperative – owned by around 600 shareholders from the area. It practises biodynamic and organic food production and polyculture.
Viva Sol brings together producers and consumers of cheese. It was set up to create links between rural and urban communities and encourages the establishment of small farmers and artisans in rural areas. It runs a farmers’ market at Vilnius and is planning to create a sustainable investment fund to buy land to give to new farmers.
Xarxa de custodia del territori is a network of different actors that works to protect the environment and encourage sustainable land management by bringing together landowners, farmers and public bodies.
Rurbans / Terra Franca works to carry out participatory actions and the recovery of the local social and cultural heritage. The chief impulse behind the creation of the Terra Franca project, which is modelled on the work of Terre de liens, is the problem of access to the land.
And in Italy?
There are a number of organizations dedicated to organic and biodynamic farming that work to maintain activity in rural areas. At the same time, many of them work to create initiatives that will lead to the creation of new connections between generations, between urban and rural areas, and between farmers and consumers. Two of them, which are also part of the Terre de Liens European network are:
Associazione italiana agricoltura biologica: brings together producers and consumers of organic products.
Campi aperti: this organization is characterized by its approach to encouraging food sovereignty, ethical consumption and the sharing economy based on organic and/or biodynamic products.