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Meat Atlas 2021 | Abattoirs – Chopping but not Changing

To mark the publication of the Meat Atlas 2021, we are republishing a selection of our favourite articles. In this one, Peter Birke brings attention to poor labour conditions in the global meat industry. The pandemic has put a spotlight on this issue, but it is by no means new. EU food trade unions call for a bloc-wide response. […]

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Farm Specialisation or Diversification?

Here we publish a short extract on farm diversification from the recent Feeding Ourselves Policy Document. In this piece, Matteo Metta widens the focus of diversification, while also addressing some blind spots on data gaps and value adding. For more from Matteo and many others, download the full report in the article.  […]

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Letter From The Farm | Instead Of Noise, Symphony

We’re back on the Montado do Freixo do Meio in Portugal, where exciting plans are afoot to have the community farm recognised as a Private Protected Area. Farmer and owner Alfredo Cunhal Sendim, a member of the Freixo do Meio Users Cooperative, explains their vision of a strong and organised community to safeguard the natural system, and how this ties into the cooperative’s broader visions of agroecology, permaculture and food sovereignty. […]

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Feeding Ourselves 2021 – Policy Report Ireland

ARC2020 today releases a new report drawn from a policy event organised in Ireland during the Summer. This report compiles responses to a joint policy document on the future of farming and food in Ireland, adding farming, rural and policy perspectives to the collective voice of Ireland’s environmental organisations. Below read the intro and download the full report. […]

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Romania | Until The Cows Come Home

In Transylvania villages, families will often own a cow or two. The day begins with neighbours taking turns to usher the cows out to the common meadows around the village, where they graze on tasty grass under the watchful eye of local herdsmen and their dogs. Come evening time the cows make their own way home for milking. Photo essay by Paul White. […]

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France | Collective Farming, Community and Connection

What does a socio-ecological transition mean for farmers? Farmers from the Nos Campagnes En RĂ©silience project share their thoughts on social issues in farming, the role of farms in the community, and how Nos Campagnes En RĂ©silience can help to build rural resilience in France. […]

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Romania | How Wild Is Too Wild?

What would you consider to be an acceptable level of personal risk for you and your family in livestock farming? Imagine life in a small caravan with two young children on the edge of wilderness where wolves and bears freely roam. Imagine these same apex predators testing your ability to protect your flock at night whilst you are trying to sleep. This is the constant reality for a young family trying to make a living from their land in Transylvania. Photo essay by Paul White. […]

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Letter From The Farm | Welcome To The Burren

Welcome to the Burren in the West of Ireland, where Shane Casey’s family have been farming Blackhead mountain for some two hundred years. Here, the unique limestone landscape requires a unique way of farming. Traditions are passed down through many generations of Burren farmers to maintain the critical symbiotic relationship between farming and conservation. In his first Letter From The Farm, Shane takes us through farming in the Burren, past and present. […]

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France | Tasting Independence in Beaufortain

In this excerpt from the book “Rural Europe on the Move: A travel guide to transitions”, Philippe Barret tells the story of Beaufortain, a community in the French Alps that has been coming together to practice rural sustainability since the 17th century. Beaufortain also happens to be the home of ARC2020’s project to build rural resilience in France – “Nos campagnes en rĂ©silience”. In this chapter you’ll meet some of the key people involved in this latest venture: coordinator ValĂ©rie Geslin, volunteer Jeanine Sochas, and farmer Pierre Gachet.  […]

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Letter From The Farm | Welcome to Ciasnocha Family Farm

Welcome to Ciasnocha Family Farm – a 730 ha regenerative grassland farm in the Vistula delta of northern Poland. In his first Letter From The Farm, Mateusz Ciasnocha walks us through what’s involved throughout the year on his farm. But first, Mateusz gives us a whistlestop tour of the farm’s history over three generations, from Communism to CAP, and the transition to regenerative agriculture. […]

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Hidden Formulas and Agri-Media – Can we Find a Fair CAP in Ireland?

With EU CAP trilogue negotiations entering a critical, final phase, the Irish Department of Agriculture, Food, and the Marine has published the results of a modelling analysis on its official website. This analysis, published in April, attempts to estimate the effects of 85% internal convergence of direct payments by 2026. While the results have been used to make strident, fear-mongering statements in the farming press, the methods used to come to these conclusions remain unclear. And the conclusions may in fact be be quite different to what is being reported in the farming press in Ireland. […]

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Pesticide Poisonings – Numbers Revised Upwards Globally

15 times more pesticide poisonings occur annually now than 30 years ago. About 385 million cases of acute unintentional pesticide poisoning occur each year, according to a new systematic review on global pesticide poisoning. This is up from 25 million annually in 1990, the last year such an estimate was made. Here Justice Pesticides outlines key findings of that review, as well as a study on pesticide contamination near intensively managed agricultural areas in South Tyrol, Italy. […]

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France | Building Rural Resilience From The Ground Up

ARC2020 is launching a new project in France to build rural resilience from the ground up. It’s called “Nos Campagnes En RĂ©silience”. The goal is to empower rural communities to realise their own fair and socio-ecological transitions, by connecting and supporting the many exciting initiatives that are emerging on the ground. Why France? And why now? Hannes Lorenzen explains. […]

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Agroecology Grows in Hungary

Agroecology is gaining more and more support from different actors around the world and is inspiring new collaborations such as the recently formed Hungarian Agroecology Network. The network was created 5 months ago and has already more than 60 active members from all over Hungary; among them farmers, representatives of producer and consumer groups, of NGOs and short supply chains, academics and researchers. Lili Balough has more. […]

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CAP Strategic Plans: Germany Taking Steps in the Right Direction?

In March 2021, the German Agriculture Ministers’ Conference and the Federal Ministry for Food and Agriculture agreed on important cornerstones for the country’s CAP Strategic Plan. In his preliminary assessment, Sebastian Lackner shows that while the resolutions have opened the door for a more ambitious CAP in Germany, it remains to be seen whether the federal and state governments will seize the opportunity when they decide on details still to be negotiated. […]