LIFE OPERATION CO2 participates during the final conference of LIFE Crops for better soil project at MAGRAMA

20.05.2016 By: Transfer

The Crops for Better Soilproject celebrated its final conference on the18 & 19 of May in the conference hall of the MAGRAMA headquarters in Madrid.
The event coincided with a sensibilisation campaign led by the General Assembly of the United Nations to heighten public awareness of the nutritional benefits of pulses, nominating 2016 as the International Year of Pulses. Over 80 people attended this event, including the project's partners, farmers from different autonomous communities, students from technical institutes and press representatives among others.

We were delighted to count among our special guests the director general of Rural Development and Forest Policy of the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and the Environment,  Dña. Begoña Nieto, who highlighted the importance of preserving the soil as part of a productive patrimony of material and environmental  goods and services that are indispensable to life. In addition, we were also honoured with the presence of Dña. Tineke Zwitser, Secretary of Agriculture of the Embassy of The Netherlands, and Dña Ángeles Parra, President of the Asociación Vida Sana.

The first day was divided in three blocks:
In the first block, the project's partners presented the results obtained during the project and shared their conclusions and future perspectives.
In second block, we heard presentations from colleagues participating in other LIFE projects related to the wider field of environmental sustainability and restoration of agrosystems, including: 

The project LIFE HELPSOIL - Adaptation to climate change through agricultural techniques of sustainable conservation, presented by Dr. Stefano Brenna from the Department of Agriculture of the Region of  Lombardia (Italy);
The project LIFE ClimAgri – Mitigation and adaptation to climate change through irrigation crops, presented by Dr. Óscar Veroz of the Asociación Española Agricultura de Conservación Suelos Vivos, AEAC.SV (Spain);
The project LIFE OPERACIÓN CO2 - Integrated agroforestry practices and nature conservation against climate change, presented by Sr. Pius Floris, Plant Health Cure (The Netherlands).
The last block tackled the question of the commercialisation and European-market demand of ecological products, which, according to available data, is experiencing an 8% annual increase.  The presentation was led by Dr. Salvador Garibay of the Department of International Cooperation of the Biological Agriculture Research Institute (FiBL, Suiza) and Sr. Thomas Scheeff, Consultant for PrimaVera-Naturkorn , a German company that commercialises ecological food for infants.

To view and download the conference presentations, click  here.
The programme was intense and all the presentations were followed by animated discussions between the speakers and the audience. The event was also wattended by local and national media, including Televisión Española (TVE).
During the second day, there was a field trip to the plantations. To know more about the activities of our fieldtrip, click here.
Finally, we would like to thank all the participants for their generous attendance. We are specially grateful to the representatives of INIA (Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria) in Navarra, INTIA (Tecnologías e Infraestructuras Agroalimentarias), CSIC (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas) and MAGRAMA, who welcomed us in their premises.
Below, a few selected photographs of the event.