Successful technical seminar LIFE+ in Ayoó de Vidriales

28.03.2014 By: Transfer LBC

The technical seminar on ¨Soil recovery of abandoned land: opportunities for productive agroforestry models¨ was organized on 21st March 2014 in a small village (Ayoó de Vidrales) situated in the province of Zamora, Spain. More than 100 villagers, experts, students and partners were present during the event. Translators were available to translate Spanish to English and vice versa in order to make the content of the presentations, which was in English or Spanish, clear for both the Dutch and Spanish participants.







 The official kick-off of the day started after the inscriptions had been fulfilled and everyone was provided with a small information folder. Sven Kallen from Transfer, Sofia Tostón the mayor of Ayoó de Vidriales and Professor Zacarías Clérigo on behalf of UVA /FGUVA opened the meeting. The mayor of Ayoó de Vidriales highlighted the importance of the event and projects such as Operation CO2 in order to stimulate rural development. Ayoó de Vidriales is a small village with less than 400 inhabitants, most of which are already retired. This situation worsens as more youth is leaving the villages to look for better opportunities in more populated parts of Spain. The type of projects LIFE+ promotes can form an inspiration for new generations according to her.







The program of the day was divided into two parts, namely a more theoretical part and a practical part. The theoretical part was held in the form of several presentations about the objectives of both LIFE+ projects and the preliminary results obtained so far. After the presentations there was an opportunity for Q&A which led to lively discussions. More information about the presentations of the Green Deserts and Operation CO2 can be found in the webpage.







Most of the students that were present during this meeting are following a course in agriculture, forestry or agroforestry at the University of Valladolid. The students are most aware of the problem that rural land tends to be abandoned and the fact that the economic revenues that these lands generate are not sufficient for most inhabitants to stay. All students were very interested in the methodology and technologies used by both projects. During the day, we had the opportunity to hold a short interview with one of the students, and you can watch this Spanish interview by clicking here.

During the presentation the participants were served coffee, drinks and traditional Spanish paella. We would therefore like to take this opportunity to thank the municipality of Ayoó de Vidriales for the food and drinks that they provided during the day. After the lunch the participants visited the fields of Life 11 (Operation CO2) in Ayoó de Vidrales and of Life 9 (The Green Deserts) in Riofrío de Aliste. Please click here to see more information about these visits. The technical seminar was then summarized by the members of the round table who exposed their views and conclusions during the field trip. Most important lesson learned today according to the panel: useless soil can be converted into productive soil, active management is requiered and especially a change of mind-set of the owner/farmer. The day ended with a good glass of local red wine and a local traditional type of rustic bread stuffed with chorizo called “hornazo Alistano”.













The technical seminar completed with the field visits at different locations led to an intensive day. The general consensus among all participants was very positive and the organisers feel satisfied with the day’s outcome. We would like to take the opportunity to thank all participants once again for their presence, positive input and interest in both projects.