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Book of Abstracts

11th IFOAM
Scientific Conference
11-15 August 1996
Copenhagen, Denmark

Abstract front page
Subject index
Athor index


Socio-Environmental Impacts Assessment and Family-Farming S26

Silveira, Miguel Angelo; Borges, Marlene

Embrapa/Cnpma-Brazilian Agricultural Research Institution/National Research Centre for Environmental Monitoring and Impact Assessment, P.O.Box 69,Jaguariuna,SP,13820-000,Brazil.

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The environmental impacts of the agricultural practices are causing the rise of new research and policy demands of economical, technological and social nature. These demands are potentialy the ones which will drive the agricultural sector to what could be called the process of environmentalization, which has at the preservation of the family-farming, one of its key for success. The modern forms of agricultural production have led to the gradual exaustion of natural resources, while at the same time penalizing the small family farmers. By not having at their hands alternatives of production that could combine market competitiveness with agro-ecological knowledge, those producers tend to choose the agro-chemical model, even without the perspective of accumulation and with the risk of depreciation of natural resources.

In the light of these facts, investiment in new structures of production, commercialization and in agricultural research are necessary. For this reason, the Embrapa/Cnpma conducts an innovative research (in its context), in order to develop alternatives that conduct to a sustainable agriculture. This research is being developed in partnership with the extension service and with a formal association of 26 families of farmers, in the state of Sao Paulo, Brazil.

To organize the actions of cooperation, the methodological planning has been based on a participative perspective. By working together, the proposals formulated by the farmers are discussed with the researchers and the extension agents who produce an environmental and educational diagnostic.

As a result of such process, both the official organisations and the farmers association decided to implement an organic horticultural production system, which is being succesfully ran by the farmers. This kind of organized production has great potential and numerous advantages to stimulate the family-farming sector, to bring benefits to their income and to reach environmental sustainability.

Klausmeyer, A.; Ramalho.L. (1995): Introducao a metodologias participativas: um guia pratico. Sactes/Abong. Recife, 246p.

Canuto, J.C.; Silveira, M.A.; Marques, J.F. (1994): Sentido da agricultura familiar para o futuro da agroecologia. Ciencia e Ambiente, v.5, n.9,p.57-63, Universidade Federal de Santa Maria.

Altieri, M. A. (1987): Agroecologia as bases cientificas da agricultura alternativa. Pta/Fase, Rio de Janeiro, 240p.