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AGFORWARD News: Feb 2016
Agroforestry for Europe
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In this Newsletter:

Introduction

Third European Agroforestry Conference

New report on the extent of agroforestry in Europe

Descriptions of agroforestry systems

Launch of National Agroforestry Plan in France

Rural development regulations (2007-2013)

National Agroforestry Associations

Agroforestry education

Agroforestry at the Real Oxford Farming Conference

Agroforestry and European Agriculture Research Strategy

AGFORWARD on Facebook

Contact Details

Subscription Details


Introduction

The aim of the AGFORWARD project, funded by the European Commission, is to promote agroforestry in Europe. A key event over the next three months is the Third European Agroforestry Conference in Montpellier from 23 to 25 May 2016. I understand from an e-mail from Christian Dupraz yesterday, that the deadline for the submission of abstracts has been extended to Sunday 28 February 2016. Hence you still have a few days to submit a poster or a paper!

The past three months have been busy for the project. Michael den Herder from the European Forest Institute is the lead author of a new report describing the extent of European agroforestry. João Palma from the University of Lisbon has led a collation of descriptions of 27 of the agroforestry systems being considered in the project. Javier Santiago-Freijanes from the University of Santiago de Compostela has led the collation of maps describing the adoption of rural development regulations between 2007 and 2013. In the last few weeks, we have also produced an on-line map providing contacts and details of National Agroforestry Associations.

We have also been promoting agroforestry in various meetings. In December 2015, AGFORWARD researcher Christian Dupraz was actively involved in the release of the National Agroforestry Development Plan for France. In the same month Rosa Mosquera Losada and I spoke at the final conference of the AGROFE project focused on agroforestry training. In January 2016, I was also able to present the work of AGFORWARD at the Real Oxford Farming Conference in the UK and at the European Agriculture Research Strategy Conference in Brussels.

At each of these events, the integration of trees with farming has been identified as a key means for farmers to continue food production whilst addressing issues such as flooding and climate warming by reducing runoff and increasing on-farm carbon storage. It is an exciting time to be promoting multi-functional land use.

With best wishes

Paul Burgess
AGFORWARD Co-ordinator


Third European Agroforestry Conference

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As reported in the last newsletter, the Third European Agroforestry Conference will take place between Monday 23 May and Wednesday 25 May 2016 at Montpellier in France. This occurs immediately before the Third General Assembly of AGFORWARD which will take place in Montpellier on Thursday 26 and Friday 27 May 2016. The title for the conference is "Celebrating 20 years of innovations in European agroforestry" and it includes three options to see agroforestry in the field. The deadline for abstract submission has recently been extended to Saturday 28 February. Full details of the conference can be found on the EURAF website. I hope that you can make it.


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New report on the extent of agroforestry in Europe

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The first objective of the AGFORWARD project is to determine the extent of agroforestry in Europe. In a previous newsletter we described an estimate for the area of European agroforestry based on a literature review. Michael den Herder, from the European Forest Institute, has led the production of a new report that examines the area of combined tree and farming using the LUCAS land use and land cover area survey. This leads to an estimate of 24 million ha which is equivalent to about 5.7% of the territorial area or 14% of the utilised agricultural area. These values are higher than previous values as they include areas from Romania, Bulgaria and higher estimates for Spain, France and Italy. The higher value for Spain is supported by an analysis of national data sources. The report also includes national analyses of the area of agroforestry in Portugal and Greece.


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Descriptions of agroforestry systems

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The second objective of the AGFORWARD project is to identify, develop and field-test agroforestry innovations. This is being achieved through 40 stakeholder groups. The third objective of the project is to evaluate innovative agroforestry at field-, farm- and landscape-scales. To support this process, João Palma (University of Lisbon) has led the production of a report describing 27 agroforestry systems.


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Launch of National Agroforestry Plan in France

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As detailed on the AGFORWARD news page, the National Agroforestry Development Plan for France was launched on 17 December 2015. It covers all forms of agroforestry. Christian Dupraz from the AGFORWARD project helped to facilitate the meeting. The plan aims to improve knowledge about agroforestry, improve regulations, stimulate agroforestry training and education, increase the value of agroforestry products, and promote agroforestry to a wider audience beyond France.


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Rural development regulations (2007-2013)

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Javier Santiago-Freijanes from the University of Santiago de Compostela has led the collation of a set of European maps describing the adoption and implementation of EU rural development measures between 2007 and 2013. The report forms part of the background study for an analysis of the extent and success of policy measures to promote agroforestry.


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National Agroforestry Associations

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A new interactive map has been created describing the position of National Agroforestry Associations across Europe. Clicking on the appropriate links should provide access to the statutes and websites of the respective organisations.


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Agroforestry education

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On the 9 December 2015, Rosa Mosquera-Losada (EURAF), Fabien Balaguer (AFAF) and Paul Burgess (Cranfield University) spoke about the benefits of agroforestry practices and education at the final conference in Brussels for the European Union funded AGROFE project. The aim of the AGROFE project was to develop vocational training in agroforestry.


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Agroforestry at the Real Oxford Farming Conference

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Agroforestry was the focus of at least two sessions at the Real Oxford Farming Conference held in the UK on 6-7 January 2016. Stephen Briggs and Martin Wolfe, who are working with the silvoarable stakeholder group in the UK, described practical aspects of the agroforestry systems on their farms. Paul Burgess from Cranfield University outlined some of the key benefits of agroforestry.


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Agroforestry and European Agriculture Research Strategy

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The Agriculture Directorate of the European Commission organised a two day meeting in Brussels on 27-28 January 2016 to present its draft paper on "A Strategic Approach to EU Agricultural Research and Innovation". The research strategy focuses on land-based primary production centred around agriculture and forestry. One of the key themes is to support integrated ecological approaches and hence there is a key role for agroforestry. Paul Burgess presented work from the AGFORWARD project and explained how agroforestry can provide multiple benefits from farm to landscape scale.


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AGFORWARD on Facebook

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You can keep up to date with the activities of AGFORWARD by linking to our Facebook page. If you have not visited the site; please do take a look.


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Contact Details

Paul Burgess, AGFORWARD Project Co-ordinator
Cranfield University, Cranfield, Bedfordshire, MK43 0AL, UK
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Kenisha Garnett, AGFORWARD Project Administrator,
Cranfield University, Cranfield, Bedfordshire, MK43 0AL, UK
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Rosa Mosquera-Losada, AGFORWARD representative from the European Agroforestry Federation
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Fabien Liagre, Leader of the AGFORWARD dissemination work-package
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www.agforward.eu



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The AGFORWARD project (Grant Agreement N° 613520) is co-funded by the European Commission, Directorate General for Research & Innovation, within the 7th Framework Programme of RTD, Theme 2 - Biotechnologies, Agriculture & Food. The views and opinions expressed in this report are purely those of the writers and may not in any circumstances be regarded as stating an official position of the European Commission.