Sustainable Agriculture for our Future and for the Earth

Sustainable Agriculture became a recurrent topic among rural producers and businessmen involved in the agri-food trade. For the National Research Council (CNR), sustainable agriculture is not just a set of practices, but rather a goal to get a food production system. The goals are:

  • Increase the productivity of natural resources and agricultural system, enabling the producers to meet the levels of demand created by population growth and economic development
  • Produce healthy, whole, nutritious foods, that satisfy human and earth well-being
  • Provide farmers with a sufficient net income to get a fair standard of living and a profit to invest in their land
  • Increase the productivity of soil, water and other resources.

For a long time, there’s been a misinterpretation of the concept of “sustainability” in agriculture, mainly influenced by political and personal ideologies of its main proponents; thinking of sustainable farming as synonymous with “ecology” is a simplistic view of something broader and complex. 

Therefore, to understand sustainable agriculture, and how to realize it, we will explain the concept of sustainability and its relationship with the agri-business.

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Sustainable Livestock Farming: Types & Benefits

Surely you may have read or heard something about sustainable livestock farming; its most common meaning is applied to the environmental context, where production processes are based on techniques and technologies with the least possible impact for the earth. 

It is a much-discussed topic in our society, because it becomes a criterion for consumers’ choice in animal protein decision-making. 

However, now let’s step back for a moment to understand the different spheres that the concept of sustainability touches. 

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Optimizing Vertical Farming [Visual]

Vertical farms can potentially achieve higher yields for the surface area dedicated to production by controlling the light, temperature, humidity, water and nutrients the plants receive. They also reduce “food miles,” the distance food items travel from the point of production to the table, and can reduce CO2 emission from transport while delivering fresher and better tasting products.

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Anatomy of an Agrihood [Infographic]

An agrihood is a mixed development that combines food and real estate. These neighborhood villages offer residential living with a farm-to-table focus for young, active families seeking a lifestyle centered around simplicity and sustainability.

While these communities are still somewhat of a novelty, demand is expected to grow now that millennials are the largest share of homebuyers on the market today. Agrihoods are part of a larger movement known as “new urbanism” to create walkable, mixed-use communities that prioritize healthful living and strong connections.

Living in an agrihood doesn’t mean you’ve suddenly become a working farmer. Residents are encouraged to volunteer at the farm, but the actual work is done by professionals who tend to the land and then sell the produce to residents and retailers, such as nearby restaurants and grocery stores.

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Why should you Care about Pollinators [Infographic]

Bees and other pollinators, such as butterflies, bats and hummingbirds, are increasingly under threat from human activities.

Pollinators allow many plants, including many food crops, to reproduce. Not only do pollinators contribute directly to food security, but they are key to conserving biodiversity – a cornerstone of the Sustainable Development Goals. They also serve as sentinels for emergent environmental risks, signaling the health of local ecosystems.

Invasive insects, pesticides, land-use change and monocropping practices may reduce available nutrients and pose threats to bee colonies.

To raise awareness of the importance of pollinators, the threats they face and their contribution to sustainable development, the UN designated 20 May as World Bee Day.

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