Sustainable agriculture means less waste of land and water. And more healthy food for 10 billion people, how many will we be in 2050?
Sustainability in agriculture is primarily concerned with producers, men and women who cannot be strangled by the strong hand of buyers. The SAI platform and the Findus case to promote respect for the land.
We always talk, in economics, about the technological industry, services, manufacturing, and we often forget that over 60 percent of the world population still depends on agriculture. Not only. By 2050, so in a few years time, the planet’s population will reach 10 billion people, and the demand for agricultural products will grow by at least 50 percent.
Who will be able to respond to this huge demand for food? And with which techniques and production methods that do not become yet another opportunity to waste one of the most important resources for man, precisely the earth, and therefore nature? Around these questions, we play the game of sustainable agriculture, at the top of the goals of the UN Agenda for Sustainable Development, the editorial compass of this site.
AGRICULTURE RESPECTING THE ENVIRONMENT
When we talk about sustainable agriculture, we mean first of all three fundamental things. First of all work so that in the cultivation there is more efficiency in the use of productive factors such as fertilizers, energy and water. A way to get more efficiency, less waste and less pollution. As for water, waste and consumption can be cut, for example, thanks to the introduction of efficient, efficient irrigation systems that can supply small volumes of water by calculating and administering the real water needs of the plants. The second pivot of sustainable agriculture is another equation: more fertile soil with less fertilizer. A goal to be achieved, for example by using the right crop rotations. In this case, for example, a cultivation can return to the same field not before a certain suitable period. Thirdly, agriculture is truly sustainable when, even before the land, it respects people, communities that work in the agricultural sector, the territory where it is produced, with its identity and its specificities. And in the respect of the people in the first place it falls the fact that the farmers, cannot be forced, from the strong hand of the buyer, not to have clarity and balance in the definition of the prices, the quantities and the quality of each product.
THE FINDUS CASE
These principles in recent years have been adopted by companies active in the sector that are increasingly investing in sustainable agriculture. One of these is Findus, one of the leaders in the frozen food market, which has joined the SAI Platform, the main international initiative on sustainability in agriculture. This membership involves the verification of the Findus plant production, through an in-depth analysis that covers all aspects of sustainability.
To apply these principles, and in keeping with a path taken years ago, Findus has begun to promote agriculture that guarantees respect for the land and protects farmers and their crops. In sustainability that is not only environmental, but also social and economic.
In order to use less fertilizers than to practice crop rotation, Findus performs soil analysis annually to assess soil fertility so as to be able to define fertilization protocols by accurately calculating the nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium content, in order to intervene in targeted way and thus distribute only the nutrients necessary for the correct growth of plants. Finally, Findus decided to focus a lot on relationships, which is why it supports the 672 Italian farms with which it collaborates on the territory with its own and third-party technicians and agronomists. A commitment that, also through the definition of the price before sowing, aims to promote sustainable agriculture in the territory, of which the community can benefit in social, economic and environmental terms.
In addition to the commitment ‘on the field’, Findus is also dedicated to telling its own mission through the Findus Green Camp , a real journey towards sustainability in the company of Fabrizio, the agronomist Findus, and 4 young explorers who have the task of explaining the techniques, the curiosities and the principles of sustainable agriculture for the cultivation of vegetables of the Minestrone Tradizione Findus .
SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE AND VEGETABLE FINDUS
Thanks to the efforts made, Findus aims to produce 90% of the total plant volumes according to the FSA sustainability standard (Farm Sustainability Assessment) by 2019, the verification scheme developed by SAI that allows to analyze its own agricultural practices in depth and covering all aspects of sustainable agriculture. The techniques used will weave products such as Minestrone Tradizione, Piselli and Spinaci, and will be verified by an audit by a third party.