Organic districts are booming in Italy and are increasingly mobilizing to build and share knowledge among operators as well as to engage local and national institutions, advocating for more and better support to organic farming. A critical area in this respect is in relation to the organic&climate interface, being Italy increasingly facing prolonged periods of drought (not exclusively over summer) and in need of a forward-looking strategy on water management in the agricultural sector.

Such urgency led to the Il biologico come strumento efficace per contrastare i cambiamenti climatici (“Organic as an effective tool to counteract climate change”) event, organised in Rome by a network of Italian biodistricts.

In its effort to set up the Organic Climate Network’s Rome hub, FIRAB is stimulating a functional dialogue with the organic districts instituted in the metropolitan area, aimed at nurturing the project’s outreach of organic farmers and at enabling a greater capacity to support operators within and beyond the hub. Furthermore, networking with organic districts and associations in the frame of Organic Climate Network is instrumental to the scalability of capacity development initiatives that target organic farmers.

 

In the framework of such dialogue, the FIRAB’s Organic Climate Network hub coach (Luca Colombo) was thus invited to present the project to a broad community of organic farmers, associations and research institutions. More than 50 participants attended the conference, including representatives of the Agricultural Ministry, the Regional Council and the Rome Food Council, invited as speakers. In his presentation, Luca introduced the Organic Climate Network ambitions and plans, focusing in particular on the knowledge materials intended to strengthen the farmers’ competences in dealing with the erratic climatic events, thus fostering a greater preparedness.

As a follow up to the event, a meeting is scheduled with the organic districts of the Rome metropolitan area to agree on a common agenda that may serve both the project’s activities and the biodistricts’ advocacy effort. The latter aims at corroborating the organic districts dialogue with the regional and national institutions in relation to urgent as well as more strategic measures to mitigate droughts effects and to promote the construction of water reservoirs for irrigation and watering farm animals.

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