Organic farmers and researchers are continuously developing highly productive and resilient organic production systems that draw upon ecological science and traditional farming knowledge. These systems target nature’s abundant ecosystem functions and the genetic traits of plants and animal varieties bred over millennia by farmers. By mimicking natural ecosystems, organic production systems can harness huge synergies that are abundantly present in nature. Grasslands and migrating animals for example co-evolved and in doing so exploited natural functions to create synergies that are also available to farmers. When they are mimicked in organic systems grasslands and pastures can produce abundant meat while constantly regenerating the system and sequestering carbon in quantities similar to trees.
The major goal of this campaign is to reverse the prevailing paradigm of food scarcity and empower the world’s small food producers with knowledge to affordably increase the performance of their farms and livelihoods based on nature’s ecological functions and biodiversity. It will outline how ecological intensification enables the production base to be diversified resulting in increased nutrition, greater year-round food availability, reduced risk of crop loss, less exposure to price fluctuations and increased marketing opportunities. It will illustrate how organic agriculture reduces the costs of farming thereby lowering the barriers to entering production and improving livelihoods.
The campaign sets out to explain the science and practices behind resilient and high-yielding ecological-based organic systems that can underpin global strategies for addressing food security, climate change mitigation and adaptation and for realizing the Right to Food and inclusive people-centered sustainable development. The campaign will raise awareness of how organic agriculture proactively maintains and builds the ecological functions that food production relies upon such as; soil building, nutrient cycling, nitrogen fixation, pest and disease regulation, water storage and drainage, soil biology and fertility, carbon sequestration, agricultural genetic diversity, pollination and many others.
The campaign underpins all the other IFOAM campaigns by outlining the technical means for addressing food security and climate change and strengthening the majority of the world’s 3 billion small food producers. The campaign maps the diversity of these ecologically intensified organic farming systems to provide policy makers with a comprehensive overview of the power of nature to nourish the world.