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Press release – 23rd August 2011

The good Harvest - www.ibuonifrutti.it

The ‘good harvest’ journey is beginning

Rome, Italy (23rd Augusto 2011) – 7.500 Km is the distance our friends will travel to collect information on social farming and educational farm activities.

The good harvest is a 30-day journey through Italy, from Udine to Agrigento. More than 40 different kinds of Italian farms will be seen – these businesses generate profits and, at the same time, they deal with social needs, services and environmental sustainability.

The journey is starting on 28th August. The team is made up of Margherita Rizzuto and Giuseppe Orefice from Agrigiochiamo (www.agrigiochiamo.it), who are experts on teaching farms and have published books on the subject, Angela Galasso and Francesca Durastanti, two agronomists working for AiCARE (Agenzia Italiana per la Campagna e l’Agricoltura Responsabile ed Etica www.aicare.it), Silvia Paolini, who will be in her office, sorting out and organising the material the others collect.

Their journey will be described in a book (published by Agra Editrice) that will be presented in November at Agrietour, Salone nazionale dell'agriturismo (www.agrietour.it).

The five ‘harvesters’ will not be alone in their journey. They will be helped by their “mentors” who will in some cases accompany them.
These wise guides, who inspired the project, include Professor Andrea Segrè, Head of the Faculty of Agriculture in Bologna and Chairman of Last Minute Market, Roberto Burdese, Chairman of Slow Food Italia, Maria Antonietta Quadrelli, manager of the WWF ITALIA Education Office, Marco Boschini, coordinator of the Virtuous Municipalities of Italy, Jacopo Fo, founder of the  Libera Università di Alcatraz in Umbria,  Carlo Hausmann, General Manager of ARM (Azienda Romana Mercati), an expert in rural development and multifunctionality in agriculture, Professor Saverio Senni and Professor Francesco Di Iacovo, agricultural economists at Tuscia University and the University of Pisa, who for years have been dealing with social farming, Professor Gregorio Arena (University of Trento), President of Labsus, the Laboratory for subsidiarity, Michele Dotti, an educator. There will also be many other educators, game experts and university teachers.

“Our long journey allowed us to encounter the enthusiasm and passion of people who bet everything on the countryside and on discovering the value of a rural environment and commitment to the community.This is why we want to tell the public about the people who succeeded, with facts and words, with solid evidence and emotion, so that the good harvest improves." These are the words the travellers – the ones who designed the ‘harvest’ - used to explain the reasons that led them to begin this adventure.

It is known as “social farming”. Like community economy, this is real farming that can provide excellent goods and services and, through them, welcome and involve people, even socially disadvantaged ones.

These important projects have increased in number recently, leading to high quality production and involving many people who were able to experience, first-hand, the benefits of the countryside. Behind the projects are deeply committed entrepreneurs who use their business to carry out their life project.

The activities have changed and improved areas and regions, restoring confidence in local communities and in young people, who were often able to share them with others and organise them again.
The good harvest is an open project and personal contributions can be given through the www.ibuonifrutti.it blog or the Facebook page “Il raccolto dei buoni frutti”.

Starting from the idea of supporting young people who believe in their dreams and want to promote local development, Selvanova (www.selvanova.com) supported this project by helping the team of harvesters on their journey.

The company Palm, which provides eco-sustainable pallets (www.greenpallet.it) and believes in sustainable production cycles, is a partner in this journey, so that the “harvesters” can harvest a good crop, ultimately leading to the ecologic conversion of the economic system.