Fundação Renova

ORGANIC PRODUCERS FROM BARRA LONGA CREATE ONLINE FAIR DURING SOCIAL ISOLATION

Published in: 05/18/2020

Sustainable Land Use

Rural producers are part of the Renovando Renewing Landscapes project, which assists in the productive readjustment of the affected properties

Rural producers Alisson Patricio and Marina Ritter Waskow are the owners of one of the model farms that is supported with reparation actions by the Renova Foundation and have intensified the online sale of organic vegetables, fruits, and vegetables. With the profile of the What to Plant project on Instagram or WhatsApp, the couple from Barretos, district of Barra Longa, has been able to mitigate the impact caused by the social isolation imposed due to the coronavirus, guaranteeing that the products reach the customers’ table.

On Instagram, it is also possible to follow the day-to-day activities on the property, from planting organic vegetables to harvesting. All crops are grown in 100% pesticide-free environments, along with native species and fruits.

“We managed to maintain production, even with the suspension of the fairs in Mariana and Barra Longa, which were our main points of sale. Now, the customer has the option to pick up the products at the property located in Barra Longa, or at our home in Santa Barbara. On request, we also deliver within the region,” Alisson explains.

On the couple’s property, there is a demonstrative unit of the Agroforestry System (SAF) and a Silviculture unit of native species for commercial purposes, which allow the rural producers to diversify production and increase income. Those who choose to pick up at the property have the opportunity to learn more about the method that combines technologies and forest diversity with the increase in agricultural production and food security. The customer can choose the carrot, arugula, various types of lettuce, chicory greens, mustard greens, among others, straight from the land and do their harvesting, all with due protection and hygiene. The area is home to fruit trees such as jabuticaba, jackfruit, soursop, pitanga, dates, and mamei, all still growing. There are also other native trees for silviculture practices.

According to Marina, planting, which was previously intended for subsistence, began to gain commercial momentum with the techniques acquired in the repair actions conducted by the Foundation.

“We were already practicing the technique before the disaster happened. But now we have gained enough knowledge to produce on a larger scale and sell vegetables in the region,” explains the producer. 

Rural producers, who suffered impacts due to the Fundao dam collapse in Mariana (MG), are supported by the Renewing Landscapes project, a partnership between the Renova Foundation, WRI Brazil, the International Centre for Research in Agroforestry (Icraf) and Ecological Farm. The project assists in the productive readjustment of the affected properties located between Fundao dam and the municipality of Rio Doce. This is done through the implantation of 25 Demonstration Units (DUs), which serve as a model for other producers.

Also, Alisson and Marina have a nursery. They will supply native seedlings for the reforestation of the Doce River Basin through the Ater Family program, even from the Renova Foundation. The project promotes the production of seedlings of native species on affected properties through the dissemination of pioneering technology developed by the Federal University of Viçosa (UFV).

These are the technologies applied in the Demonstration Units:

  • Ecological Pasture Management (Voisin Silvipasture System): Technique based on Voisin Rational Grazing (VRG) and adapted by Professor Jurandir Melado (Ecological Farm). It provides a balance between soil-pasture-cattle, combined with the introduction of trees for the animals’ thermal comfort, favoring the sustainability and productivity of the system.
  • Agroforestry Systems: Consortium between agricultural production and planting of trees, allowing producers to diversify their production, with the improvement of ecosystem services, generating income with timber or non-timber forest products without renouncing their traditional agricultural production.
  • Silviculture of Native Species: Planting of tree species native to the region for the production of wood and non-timber forest products for ecological and economic purposes.

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