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Rural Dialogues | Not Necessarily Money – farm renewal and (inter)generational considerations

How do farms pass on between the generations in a way that respects the needs of older and younger people? Share Conway and colleagues argue for an approach that allows older farmers to maintain and sustain normal day to day activity and behaviour on their farms in later life, whilst also ‘releasing the reins’ to allow for the necessary delegation of managerial responsibilities and ownership of the family farm to their successors. […]

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Rural Dialogues | Stochastic System Collapse Part 2 – the Social and Solidarity Economy Alternative

In part one, we outlined just how bad the situation is regarding climate and biodiversity collapse, as well as the people-driven responses to this  – from extinction rebellion to the school strikes. Beyond these alarm-raising direct action initiatives, what is there out there to become the system change that’s so clearly needed? Here in part 2 we introduce the social and solidarity economy, and the interesting lessons we can learn from separatist movements from the past and present, from Quebec to Ireland. […]

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Ireland | Beef Plan Movement Steps up Protest

On Wednesday the 10th of July an estimated 2,500 farmers took to the streets of Dublin to protest against the proposed Mercosur deal. The protest was organised by Beef Plan, a voluntary not for profit organisation set up in October 2018 by a small group of farmers from Meath (in Ireland’s centre-east). Since then, its membership has grown to over 20,000. So who are they and what do they want?  […]

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Ireland | Agriculture as part of a Just Transition

How can the agricultural sector in Ireland be part of a Just Transition to address inequality in the sector and tackle climate change? Agriculture is not only a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in Ireland, it is also the most unequal sector in the Irish economy in income terms. When it comes to climate change and agriculture, we need to change how we think about the challenge of reducing emissions. Farmers and their communities must play a central role in planning climate action to ensure it is good for farmers as well as the planet. […]

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Rural Dialogues | Landcare Germany – Bringing Farmers, Conservationists & Policymakers Together

How can farming organisations and environmental organisations have real conversations with each other – where everyone listens, and difficult issues grappled with respectfully? Where everyone comes away with a better understanding of other people’s positions? There are in-situ meetings, and then there is the Landcare process. Oliver Moore has more.
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Rural dialogues – Let’s talk!

Introducing our next debate series – rural dialogues. What is the state of play for rural Europe? Are rural places still lagging behind – forgotten, disadvantaged and in need of extra supports? Or is there a rural renaissance of sorts occurring, from smart villages to innovation hubs? Tell us what you know and let’s get talking! […]

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Ireland’s New Organic Action Plan | Committed – to What?

Like most EU Member States, Ireland periodically develops an action plan for its organic sector. There, a team of stakeholders, drawn from the conventional and organic sectors, as well as representatives of the Irish state’s Department of Agriculture, have developed the Organic Action Plan for Ireland, 2019-2025. Ireland has among the very lowest number of organic farmers, and organic land area, in European organics. So what difference will this plan make? […]

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MEPs Mean Business on Live Exports

The European Parliament last week called on member states to step up enforcement of existing rules on protecting livestock during transport. MEPs are urging member states to ramp up spot checks, use tracking technology to monitor compliance, and apply tougher penalties for offenders. Transport times should be cut, but the preference is to phase out live exports altogether in favour of local slaughtering. And when animals are transported to non-EU countries, EU standards should be applied. […]