Italy is among the top 10 countries in the world in terms of agricultural surfaces devoted to organic farming: about 10% of Italian cropland meet organic farming standards. However, agricultural biodiversity is a neglected issue that needs to be addressed as 75% of Italian farms are specialized. PUR Projet is working on two regional projects (North and South) with the Italian Association for Organic Agriculture (AIAB), an important and recognized player working for the promotion of organic farming in Italy. The AIAB project aims at planting trees with organic farmers in order to boost the local economy by diversifying agricultural production, and improve their resilience to climate changes, especially in the South.
Italy is among the top 10 countries in the world in terms of agricultural surfaces devoted to organic farming: about 10% of Italian cropland meet organic farming standards. However, agricultural biodiversity is a neglected issue that needs to be addressed as 75% of Italian farms are specialized. In addition, climate changes in southern Europe (droughts, storms) are another challenge to face in order to reduce the vulnerability of farmers in Italy.
The Italian Association for Organic Agriculture (AIAB) is an important and recognized player working for the promotion of organic farming in Italy. As part of two regional projects (North and South) of AIAB, tree plantings with organic farmers intends to boost the local economy by diversifying agricultural production: citrus, chestnuts, walnuts, olive oil etc. Farmers will also experience the benefits of integrating trees on their farms (agroforestry) and will learn about the importance of preserving forest areas for more resilience, especially in the South of the country.
LocationFriuli Venezia Giulia and Calabria regions, Italy
Agroforestry and reforestation
Local partnerAssociazione Italiana per l'Agricoltura Biologica (AIAB)
ParticipantsOrganic farmers in Calabria and Friuli Venezia Giulia
The Associazione Italiana per l’Agricoltura Biologica (AIAB) is a non-profit association created in 1988 in Turin. Well-known national network promoting organic farming in Italy, it gathers farmers, practitioners, experts, researchers, and consumers. It is composed of 18 regional offices coordinated by the national office in Rome, the plantations are coordinated locally by the specific AIAB regional offices. AIAB is one of the biggest agricultural education and training providers in Italy, also involved in organic certification, research and communication campaigns. AIAB created the label “Garanzia AIAB” with a specific standard for Italian Organic Farming and has a farms networks called “Bioagriturismi AIAB” and a National Network of Organic School Farm.
A selection of species is made based on farmers’ interest, appropriate micro-climatic conditions and their value for biodiversity preservation. The seedlings are between 12 and 24 months old, depending on the single specie. Oak, figs, almonds and eucalyptus are some of the planted species.More information
17 small-scale and medium-scale farmers were identified to take part in the project in 2015, they are from the Torano Castello, Bisignano and Santa Sofia d’Epiro regions. Their average agriculture area is around 3 000 m2 (largest size: 10 000 m2, smallest size: 400m2).