Organic farming, launch of Organic LTEs: an international network of Italian and French researchers
The Organic LTEs has been established in Pisa. It is an international network of Italian and French researchers focused on the study of organic farming. The network is coordinated by ITAB- Technical Institute of Organic Farming and includes the “Enrico Avanzi” Centre for Agro-Environmental Research of the University of Pisa, Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies, University of Florence, and the Council for Agricultural Research and Agricultural Economy Analysis (CREA). Its main objective is the management, in organic farming, of the Long Term Experiments (LTEs), ie those experiments lasting more than 10 years. The network will be presented in October in Lyon at the Agroecology Forum 2017.
“The so-called LTEs are a key tool for field agronomic research”, said Daniele Antichi, a researcher at the University of Pisa, “in particular, that aimed at understanding the effects of farming practices on soil fertility and soil carbon sequestration, which are characterized by gradual dynamics occurring over an extended period of time, on the order of tens of years. These aspects are of crucial importance in organic farming where soil fertility and the preservation of soil organic matter are definitely fundamental for the agro-environmental efficiency and sustainability of crop systems”.
According to the researcher, managing the Long Term Experiments in organic farming involves considerable difficulties for researchers due to the limited financial resources but also to aspects related to scientific methodology and socio-cultural approaches. The availability of scientific results obtained in different climatic and socio-economic contexts would greatly improve their impact on the scientific community and on society.