International Centre for Research in Organic Food Systems

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1 Coordinates, promotes, and facilitates research in OFS International Centre for Research in Organic Food Systems Increased recognition of the potential role of organic food systems in solving environmental and societal challenges Affiliated with Aarhus University, University of Copenhagen, and the Danish Technical University. Hosted by Aarhus University at the Foulum Campus. Core funding from the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries. Provision of research results and information for development of organic farming and food systems

2 ICROFS R&D within Organic principles Program development and implementation (EU and DK) Promotion of research and research topics (international) Health Organic Agriculture should sustain and enhance the health of soil, plant, animal, human and planet as one and indivisible. Ecology Organic Agriculture should be based on living ecological systems and cycles, work with them, emulate them and help sustain them. Fairness Organic Agriculture should build on relationships that ensure fairness with regard to the common environment and life opportunities Care Dissemination/Communication Priority project initiation Organic Eprints Policy support Organic Agriculture should be managed in a precautionary and responsible manner to protect the health and well-being of current and future generations and the environment.

3 The vision Or. The Big Hairy Audacious Goal The principles of organic agriculture become a global reference for sustainability in agriculture and food systems due to evidence based on research and adaptive management.

4 What? How? A centre without walls of the Danish Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Undertake research initiatives in collaboration with research institutions and universities International Board (representatives from Europe, Asia, Africa, America, IFOAM and Danish organisations and universities) National Programme Committee (representatives from Danish research organisations and the organic sector)

5 Main activities Coordinator of research programs and projects In Denmark since 1996; In Europe since 2007 East Africa from 2011 Disseminating research results and knowledge: Projects Programs Organic Eprints Lobbying for organic research

6 Danish research Programs Organic RDD 2 Theme: Growth, Integrity and Robust Systems Januar mio. DKK (app. $ 17 mio.) 10 projects Coordinated by ICROFS, funded by Green Growth and Developement programme (GUPD). Short for: The Organic Research, Development and Demonstration programme in Denmark. Organic RDD Start January mio. DKK (app. $ 17 mio.) 11 projects DARCOF III individual projects to provide more knowledge on the potential contribution of organic farming to sustainable development of society.

7 IDEAS AND PRIORITIES - stakeholders RESEARCH DISSEMINATION USE Projects Focus areas Programs Papers Conferences Education Experience, inspiration ICROFS Advisory service Analysis and evaluation Farmers Advisors Government NGO's Industry Consumers

8 European research programs CORE Organic The European Research Network New projects chosen This October eleven new projects were chosen for funding under the new programme CORE Organic Plus CORE Organic Plus benefits from additional top-up funding by the European Commission. Short for: Coordination of European Transnational Research in Organic Food and Farming Systems CORE Organic CORE Organic II CORE Organic Plus

9 History of research programs coordinated by ICROFS FØJO 1996 DARCOF I Production and environment. Research development and communication 2000 DARCOF II Effective production Inherent and organic qualities of organic foods CORE I 11 countries. Pilot call on animal health, quality of foods, and marketing ICROFS DARCOF III Organic RDD International research cooperation and organic integrity Growth, trustworthiness and robust systems CORE II 21 countries, larger joint funds, new research opportunities 2013 Organic RDD II Growth, trustworthiness and robust systems 2014 App researchers involved in each above program, Phd students in organic food and farming CORE Plus 20 countries, extra top up funding from European Commission

10 New research project funded by the Villum foundation Challenging one last frontier: Understanding and improving deep rooting (DeepFrontier) Development of systems with crops with deeper roots that allow us to exploit unused nutrients and water from deep soil layers hereby increasing the sustainability of cropping systems. Study their resource use of such systems Study biological effects and carbon sequestration in soil layers down to 5m depth Soil depth (m) Exploiting biodiversity: - new species as cover crops Ryegrass White clover Chicory Dyers voad Vipers bugloss Root intensity (intersect. per m)

11 European research Projects EU funded Short for: European Organic Aquaculture. OR Aqua Vision: the economic growth of the organic aquaculture sector in Europe OrAqua will suggest improvements for the current EU regulatory framework for organic aquaculture Solid Vision: to provide an innovative toolbox with novel methodologies to contribute to the competitiveness of the dairy industry

12 International research project ProGroV Focuses on improving productivity and growth in existing organic value chains in Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania A collaboration between universities in Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya and Denmark ( ) Addresses development of agro-ecological methods, governance and management of organic value-chains, and capacity development in participatory and interdisciplinary approaches Short for: Productivity and Growth in Organic Value Chains

13 New international research project (VOVE) Short for: Viability of the Villlum Experiment A pre-project for a long-term exploration of Viable, Integrated, Agro-Ecological Food Systems: To set the theoretical background for a long-term project to test the hypothesis Complex, agro-ecological, functionally integrated and truly sustainable food systems can nourish the world in 2050 with zero net emissions of GHG.

14 Addressing the potential of OFS to contribute to solving societal challenges International research priority topics: food security, climate change adaptation and market integration of smallholder farmers improved food safety and reduced use of antibiotics breeding of crop varieties targeted at low input growing conditions and aiming at high quality eco-systems biology in support of ecofunctional intensification of organic agriculture

15 an open archive for organic research Developed and launched by ICROFS in th largest archive on agriculture in the world More than publications Use is free of charge registered users of Organic Eprints More than visits each day Use: teaching, research, practice and advice

16 Main communication and info News and events, projects websites, research results, fact sheets, publications, etc. Organic Eprints ( open on-line archive for research in organic Newsletters in English & Danish sign up at

17 From symposium on agro-biodiversity and ecosystem services, Washington DC, 2010: Biodiversity benefits organic agriculture and organic agriculture benefits biodiversity - True or false? Collaboration with USDA and OMS-ASA Support from OECD-CRP and USDA Organic Research and Extension Initiative (OREI) To joint conference on Innovations in Organic Food Systems for Sustainable Production and Enhanced Eco-system Services. What are the questions today?

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