LIVESEED annual meeting – importance of organic seed
Two weeks ago we attended the annual project meeting of the LIVESEED Horizon 2020 project in Żelechów (Poland).
The four years long European Union project – reaching half-time of its duration – aims at enhancing the use of organic sowing seeds besides increasing the productivity and the sustainability of organic farming through breeding activities. The participants of the meeting reported on their results already achieved, from which professional policy-related activities seem to be extremely successful. One of the tasks of the Hungarian Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (ÖMKi) is the organizational and operational analysis of on-farm plant variety testing methods and the elaboration of recommendations for the implementation of cost-effective organic variety tests with low infrastructural requirements. For this end, our colleague, Tina Kovács, made a fact-finding series of interviews in cooperation with Tove Mariegaard Pedersen, from the Danish consortium partner called SEGES, in which several organizations performing on-farm variety tests in 15 countries had been involved. The study is to be submitted to the European Commission at the end of May and based on the results the elaboration of the proposals can be started in the project.
Since it is important to disseminate the results of the research to as many farmers as possible in a plain language, we are to write Practice Abstracts focusing on each specific topic. The coordination of this task belongs to ÖMKi, and during the meeting, we made serious progress also in this field by collecting more than 70 abstract topics with the help of the participating project partners. In the next one year, the ready Practice Abstracts will be published on the website of the project and also the EIP Agri and the Organic Farm Knowledge platforms, where they can be freely accessed.
The meeting was closed by a field visit, where the experimental sites of a comparative wheat variety test running for 25 years (including organic, transitional and conventional areas) have been presented by the Polish project partners (Institute of Soil Science and Plant Cultivation – IUNG).