The Network for Rural Development of Serbia, in cooperation with 6 other networks for rural development in the Balkans, has started the implementation of the project "Academy from field to table for a green Western Balkans - our common European future" funded by the European Union.
The project has the following objectives:
• Strengthen the capacities of CSOs in the sustainable food and livelihood system through the regional "From Field to Table Academy".
• Introducing innovative, green and inclusive solutions for sustainable food systems and livelihoods.
• Further strengthening of the contribution and influence of national rural networks/BRDN in the processes of making policies and decisions and the agenda at the national and regional level by improving the process of implementation/alignment with the EU.
Funded by the Horizon Europe programme and the United Kingdom funds on research and innovation, GRANULAR is a four-year project and it aims to generate new insights to characterize rural diversity. To this end, GRANULAR will generate novel datasets and methods to better understand the characteristics, dynamics and drivers of rural areas. In addition, a Rural Compass will be created for rural actors in order to help them grasp the specificities and diversity of their territories, with the objective e of identifying main challenges and designing tailored place-based policies to address them.
Although less and less involved, the agrarian sector, that is, agriculture in the national economy, significantly determines the different dimensions of the development of rural areas, and certainly its ecological dimension, which, in itself, always has a clear territorial perspective. Global society's demands for food safety and quality, as well as the increasingly developed awareness of environmental protection, represent some of the more important global factors and needs for ecologically sustainable development. On the other hand, the rural population is seen as a coexistence of man and nature, which represents the dominant framework of his life and work, and it seems that insufficient attention has been drawn to the quality of life of such a population, primarily in the valorization of its products, as opposed to technologically and industrially created food.
There are several main advantages of practicing biodynamic agriculture compared to traditional agriculture. Biodynamic farming relies on soil health as the basis for growing healthy plants. By using natural fertilizers, compost, and other soil building techniques, biodynamic farmers are able to improve soil fertility and structure, leading to the growth of healthy plants.
Acorns are predominantly found in the Mediterranean region, especially in the north of Africa, in Spain and Portugal. The fruit is oblong, i.e. cylindrical in shape, and farmers often use it in the diet of pigs. Namely, consumption of this fruit improves the taste of livestock meat. On average, one pig eats 10 to 12 kilograms of acorns per day.
From June 12 to 15, 2023, the 3rd Balkan Rural Parliament was held in Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Organized by the Balkan Network for Rural Development, with the support of GIZ (German Society for International Cooperation), the summit gathered around 90 representatives of civil society, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, local food producers, national government organizations and EU institutions.
The Balkan Rural Parliament, in the spirit of rural parliaments throughout Europe, aims to express the voice of rural communities in the region, to promote self-help and action of rural people and to ensure that their needs and interests are reflected in rural development policies.
Up to 350 ERP-partners and friends came together in Kielce12-15.9.2022 on 5th European Rural Parliament to express their views and voices on rural future. The participants had a good time meeting and discussing with people all around Europe.
Also three representatives of the Network for Rural Development of Serbia participated on the ERP and they have opportunity to share informations about Agromix project and project activities.
During the 5th European Rural Parliament was adopted the Manifesto.
As part of the "Agromix" project, implemented by the Network for Rural Development of Serbia in cooperation with the partner consortium coordinated by Coventry University, on December 7, 2022, a field consultation workshop was held with local actors in the village of Rudno. The target group were farmers.
The current state of agriculture and opportunities for improvement were discussed with a group of farmers. Representatives of the Network for Rural Development explained the concepts of agroforestry and mixed agriculture to the farmers, and then those present discussed the possibilities of agricultural development and the principles of agroforestry.
As part of the "Agromix" project, implemented by the Network for Rural Development of Serbia in cooperation with the partner consortium coordinated by Coventry University, on November 15, 2022, a field consultation workshop was held with local actors in the village of Rudno. The target group was women and young people.
The current state of agriculture, rural development and the participation of young people and women in the rural economy were discussed with a group of interested parties. Considerable attention was devoted to the discussion about the possibilities of agricultural development, not the principles of agroforestry.
As part of the "Agromix" project, which is implemented by the Network for Rural Development of Serbia in cooperation with the partner consortium coordinated by Coventry University, on October 18, 2022, a field consultation workshop was held with local actors in the village of Gokčanica.
The current state of agricultural production in the village, as well as the possibilities of agricultural development based on the principles of agroforestry, were discussed with a group of farmers. The participants pointed out that due to depopulation in the village and the entire region, it is increasingly difficult to implement development measures in agriculture.
Agroforestry is an integral part of local practice in agricultural production, but certainly support is needed in ensuring sustainable production and preserving scarce resources for agricultural production.