SHORT DESCRIPTION OF THE PROJECT
Anna comes from the eighth generation of family members who live and work on Där Söre. This Swedish farm has been in the family since 1765 and produces potatoes, strawberries and vegetables that are sold to companies and directly to consumers. During the summer, there is also a farm café and a small shop that sells locally grown and locally made products from other farms and small enterprises. Tourists and local families seize this opportunity to have a picnic and stroll around too. The farm is certified by the Swedish IP – standard certifying contributions to sustainable development in crop and animal production. Anna’s approach focuses on reducing waste, and changing the standards and packaging of potatoes. The farm and company employ about 50 people, most of whom are temporary workers during the summer season.
In 2000, Anna Willén realised that producing potatoes and selling to companies and directly to consumers was not very profitable and generated a lot of waste, because any potatoes that were too small ended up being fed to pigs. By selecting small potatoes and packing them in 1 kg bags, Anna created an innovative concept for the Swedish market, which was not used to seeing small bags of potatoes sold straight to the consumer. She called them “Gourmetpotatis” (gourmet potatoes). Anna also reduced waste by printing the product information and recipes straight onto the bag. Her gourmet potatoes became a premium product, which have increased incomes for all farmers who have adopted these new communication and packing methods. Potatoes have once again regained their rightful place in Swedish food culture.
SHORT DESCRIPTION OF THE PROJECT
Lisa runs Seggio, an organic family farm situated in the unspoiled hills of the Tosco-Togmagnolo Appeninnes, in the province of Forli-Cesena, Italy. After having graduated as a veterinary surgeon, she started becoming interested in local zootechnical problems and decided to better her work with other farmers, and improve the quality of their finished products. In order to do just that, Lisa created the Bio Valbidente consortium, which is a sales point for organic farmers, and began using mycorrhiza for symbiotic agricultural production. Lisa’s farm produces cereals, feed and livestock, and everything is minutely controlled. Lisa has also written a product specification, contributing to improving the local economy with good, clean, fair and innovative products.
In 2014, after several experiments, Lisa developed an innovative symbiotic agriculture project using mycorrhiza at sowing. Mycorrhiza is a fungus that colonises the roots of the cereals, feed crops, trees and vegetables, and helps the crops capture more nutrients. This process maintains and develops the microbiological sustainability of the soil and plants, and also gives the final product better organoleptic and nutritional characteristics. For instance, they contain natural biota, which is a good bacteria that betters human health. These results were confirmed by national research institutes and have been published in specialist magazines. At the same time, Lisa wanted to control the quality of the meat produced by the farm and so created a fully controlled system. The meat now contains more elements, such as lycopene, carotene, phenols and antioxidants. What’s more, the higher percentage of polyphenols and enzymes in the meat facilitates human digestion. Lisa also found that this approach reduced nitrate residues in fruits and vegetables. Lisa’s aim was to improve the health of the population when she began the Bio Valbidente consortium. With her symbiotic method, she hopes to reduce the incidence of certain diseases, such as gastro-intestinal disorders, obesity, hepatic steatosis and diabetes. Lisa brought other farms, local schools, oncological institutes, public administrators and associations in Romagna on board too, and the local economy is more dynamic, food production is cheaper and the methods used are more sustainable.
The applicant worked for 25 years in the IT industry and did not have any education or experience in the agricultural or fisheries sectors. She moved to the countryside and started a project with her daughter. The aim of the “Trout Ojcowski” fish farm is to restore brown trout breeding, promote conscious and ethical breeding, educate the community about the history of the region and culinary traditions. In 2014, the unused naturalisation ponds were leased to Magdalena Wegiel and her daughter. In fact, during the implementation of one of the project in cooperation with the Ojcowski Park Ms. Magdalena Wegiel leaned about ponds to be naturalised and decided to take the risk and to take part in a tender where the main requirements were to run the holding in accordance with the environment: the applicant started a farm complying with environmental requirements. The fish pods located in the national park owe their unique features to the picturesque scenery, natural microclimate and to Mlynowka, a stream providing well oxygenated and crystal clear water: this allows favourable conditions for breeding maintaining genetic purity. The wild salmon trout fry is less prone to diseases, adapts well to natural foodstuff which results in high survivability. No industrial techniques are used in order to enhance weight growth. In the fish farm the applicant uses traditional tools: seines, wooden pliers, landing nets, boat-hooks.
Brown trout constitutes only 2% of all trout farms in Poland and is one of the few in Europe. It is a very difficult and demanding fish, bred mainly by the Polish Fishing Associations for restocking rivers. The innovativeness of the project lies primarily in breeding, a unique species, in a natural and original way, combined with modern methods of sale and communication. In addition to breeding there is also catering activity, which is based on the sale of trout served in wo types of modern food trucks. Trout Ojcowski is now a well-known brand and is appreciated by culinary animators, propagators of healthy food and the most of talented chefs.
The applicant won national awards with the project and has been taking part in educational activities in the field of environment protection and culinary heritage, cooperating with local authorities.
Color Off is an officinal coloreria located in Ostrense. It is a start-up project born after months of studies and research from the idea of the applicant (she is a molecular biologist). Within one hectare of land located among the hills of the Marche Apennine, Sandra grows and processes dye plants in order to extract organic coloring and to perform dyes on natural fibers. Cultivations respect the principles of environmental sustainability and they have low environmental impact. She organizes classes and workshops of natural dyeing within her farm, a real lab, but also on other locations on request.
This start-up of natural coloring is the answer to the problems caused by synthetic dyes, pollution and allergies: this is the idea of Sandra Quarantini. Her color is yellow and she is specialized in the cultivation of reseda luteola from which she obtains a very bright yellow, which can be sold to clients as a plant or as a colorant. Her activity is addressed to weavers, tailors ad creatives, but many requests are coming from privates as well i.e. to dye newborn’s layettes and she will soon open an e-commerce because many requests arrive from abroad.
The project respects the environment and promotes new and sustainable lifestyles and consumption models.