Farmers at the heart of innovation applying and sharing knowledge in living farm labs

Organic living labs and lighthouse farms in Europe” is a study by TP Organics, the European technology platform for organic food and farming. Launched at the Organic Innovation Days 2022 and subcontracted to the Hungarian Research Institute of Organic Agriculture ÖMKi, it conducts an analysis of seven living labs and five lighthouse farms in the organic sector across Europe. These initiatives have implemented not only technological, but also social, economic, organisational and governance innovations. By applying different approaches and methodologies, they have been able to find local organic solutions and improve knowledge and innovation sharing. 

The main result of the study is a set of actions to ensure organic living labs and lighthouse farms reach their full potential, mainly focused on: 

  • Improving knowledge sharing with events between peers, learning courses and trainings; 
  • Raising awareness about the concept of living labs and lighthouse farms in the organic sector and investing in social media; 
  • Setting up networks that connect all the actors in the organic sector. 

The study also points out how the needs of organic farmers and other actors are currently not sufficiently met through existing Agricultural Knowledge and Innovation Systems (AKIS). A new European organic advisory network is proposed to solve the problem of disconnection and underrepresentation of organics in national AKIS. 

This study is highly relevant for the EU Organic Action Plan, recognising the importance of research and innovation for organic, knowledge exchange on organic farming, and building organic agricultural knowledge and innovation systems (AKIS). 

Download the full study here

The work of IFOAM Organics Europe on this topic is co-financed by the LIFE programme of the European Union, under the Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA). This page only reflects the views of the authors and its sole responsibility lies with IFOAM Organics Europe. The CINEA is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information provided.

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