Farmer Workshop at Hof Tolle

ClimateFarming Project meets practice! The farmer workshop at the Hof Tolle was initiated by Triebwerk and Hof Tolle. Besides the presentations of the ClimateFarming project and the different networks the focus of the farmer workshop was on the practical utility of the different adaptation measures.
As the consortium of ClimateFarming Project is always looking for cooperation with associated partners, “Netzwerk Ökolandbau und Kompost Hessen (NÖK)” an organisation engaged in sustainable farming and on-farm research participated in this workshop and brought in their experience. Also the “Netzwerk Praxisforschung Hessen” was involved and presented their network and current research efforts concerning drought resilience in agricultural production systems.
The focus of the workshop was the topics “New and Alternative Crops” and “Compost Use in Organic Farming”, both with focus on climate adaptation and mitigation at the farm-level. After the theoretical introduction to both measures, the participants were driven to the field trials. At the field, the Hof Tolle explained how they implemented the adaptation measure “New and alternative crops” and explained challenges as well as limitations. Likewise, the application of compost on the sudan grass trial and its expected benefits were explained by Tommy Schirmer (NÖK). On the field, a discussion round was initiated in which the farmers and consultants could pose their questions. Additionally, the farmers were asked to state their biggest doubts and worries concerning the implementation of new or alternative crops in their rotation. The responses are assessed in the “Analysis of participants’ feedback”. At the chickpea trial, an expert from the Landesbetrieb Landwirtschaft Hessen (Helena Knaus) gave an overview regarding the current level of chickpea production in Hessen and the issues of two test trials in southern Hessen.
After the official part of the farmer workshop at the Hof Tolle, the operator of a composting facility in northern Hessen (Stephan Margraf) offered the participants a tour through the facility which was appreciated by many participants.
Feedback from participants: the aspect of farm management and development at the core of the ClimateFarming Project was perceived as very interesting. One idea for an upcoming farmer workshop would be to set “Farm Development” as the topic and provide corresponding inputs and exercises.