Youth for organic: OEYE 2022
Organic and You(th): Together for sustainable food systems
Organics Europe Youth Event in a nutshell
The first Organics Europe Youth Event (OEYE) took place on 31 August-1 September 2022 in Frick, Switzerland. It encouraged youth interested and active in organic to join the two-day event to discuss and learn about the potential & challenges of organic production and its role as a sustainable food system.
The Youth Event brought together youth with diverse backgrounds: from farmers to retailers and processors, from activists to politicians. The event fostered cross-fertilisation between different disciplines and generated innovative ideas for the future of organic production.
OEYE Participants had the chance to grow their professional network, creating a platform where the European organic youth meet. Here are some of the key take-aways from our two days of imagination, connection and questioning the current food system in Frick, Switzerland.
Take a look at our photo gallery and relive the unforgettable moments of the Organics Europe Youth Event 2022. Want to see more insights? Have a look at our Facebook photo album!
Photo credits: Andreas Basler (FiBL) and Madelaine Rüger (FiBL) & other organisers.
Organic and you(th)
Organic food and farming are part of the solution to global societal and environmental issues. Its positive effects on our climate, the environment, biodiversity, and animal welfare demand for enhanced knowledge and an organic movement that can shape and empower the future of the organic community.
Are you a young professional, farmer, activist, student, entrepreneur or simply interested in organic food systems? Then, this event is for you! Together, we discover how the organic movement can inspire change through a wide range of perspectives – from science, business, politics, arts, and practical experiences by young entrepreneurs and activists. We discuss issues and topics related to sustainable food systems and develop ideas to improve and promote organic food systems.
Join the online conversation!
Join the online conversation by using #OEYE2022 and #OrganicYouth in your OEYE-related posts, and by tagging the event organisers @organicseurope, @FiBLorg, @Biosuisse.
Have questions or inquiries? Contact us at [email protected]
DAY 0 – 30 August
DAY 1 – 31 August
DAY 2 – 1 September
Keynote: From what if to what’s next? The power of imagination to create change in our food systems
Session: Inspirational hour
- Krassimir Benjamin – CEO and Chief Chocolatier, Bio Benjamin OOD
- Jan Trávníček – Director, Czech Organics
- Arthur Petrie – International Director, Lemonaid & ChariTea
- Alice Fauconnet – Co-Founder, New roots
- Fabio Volkmann – Partnerships and Project Management, Climate Farmers Movement (reach out to Fabio via [email protected] to receive the presentation and further information on Climate Farmers)
Workshops and info sessions (including coffee break)
- How to get involved in organic organisations? Balz Strasser – Director, Bio Suisse; Eduardo Cuoco – Director, IFOAM Organics Europe
- Animal production & ethics – Are we on the right track? Mirjam Holinger – Group Animal Housing & Livestock Breeding, FiBL
- The new organic regulation. What change is happening? Tom Nizet – Managing Director, Authent GmbH
- Plant-based Food – Taste it! Luca Müller – Specialist Processing and Trade, Bio Suisse; Ivraina Brändle – Food Quality and Food Processing, FiBL; Ursula Kretzschmar – Food Quality and Food Processing, FiBL
- How to support short supply chains and enhance direct farm sales. Michèle Hürner – Project lead Direct Farm Sales, Bio Suisse
- Organic breeding as a driver of agrobiodiversity in farming systems. Mariateresa Lazzaro – Group Plant Breeding, FiBL; Martin Sommer – Policy Officer on GMOs, Patents and Seeds, IFOAM Organics Europe
- Hidden Heroes: Mycorrhizae/rhizobia and other heroes in the soil for soil fertility. Sophie van Geijtenbeek – Group Cultivation Technique Arable Crops, FiBL; Sarah Symanczik, Group Nutrient Management & Symbiosis, FiBL
- The proof of the pudding is in the eating: Learn about Design Thinking. Dominique Dietiker – Group Lead Communication, Agridea
- Late to the party: Can organic agriculture catch up on socially sustainable working conditions? Noah Ramos – Social Responsibility International, Bio Suisse (reach out to Noah via [email protected] to receive the presentation and state the intended use)
Keynote: Perspectives on transformation – What can we learn from agroecology and philosophy?
- Prof. Dr. Johanna Jacobi – Assistant Professor of Agroecological Transitions, Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich (reach out to Johanna via [email protected] to receive the presentation)
- Dr. Joe Slater – Lecturer in Moral and Political Philosophy, University of Glasgow
Watch our Organics Europe Youth Event teasers, and get inspired by young professionals from Argentina, Switzerland and Italy sharing their views and ideas about the organic movement.
When attending the Organics Europe Youth Event, participants had the option to take part in an additional overnight excursion on 1-2 September.
Each excursion was centred around one challenge to reach a sustainable food system. They showcased different approaches by presenting initiatives, innovative farms and other value chain actors which are taking action today. Through the excursion, participants gained practical insights into potential solution approaches and got to know the Swiss food system.
Below you will find the three excursions participants could choose from:
Excursion 1 | The role of organic agriculture in combating climate change
This excursion investigated how the organic sector can adapt and help to mitigate climate change. What are levers of organic agriculture to reduce climate change impacts? Which concrete measures can be implemented on a farm, by a processor or by a trader? And how can the organic sector contribute to more resilient food systems under a changing climate?
- At our first stop, we were introduced to the project of climate-neutral agriculture in the canton of Graubünden, then we visited the organic farm of Biohof Gilli which is part of the previously mentioned climate-neutral project. Location: Sufers
- Our second stop was at Merz – one of the largest bakery-confectionery-café companies in eastern Switzerland. There, three panelists discussed the relevance of our food system in the climate debate with a special focus on gastronomy and the processing industry. Location: Chur
- End of excursion: Basel, 16:30 on 2 September
Excursion | Alternative trade relations and fair production
Excursion 2 (former 3) | Chances and challenges of agroforestry systems
This excursion investigated the diverse environmental and ecological advantages of agroforestry systems. By having looked at innovative models of agroforestry in Switzerland, participants received an insight into agroforestry practices, the motives of farmers to implement such a system, and learned also about its challenges. Moreover, the excursion shed light on the processing opportunities for agroforestry products and discussed the potential of tree crops in general.
- We started our field trip by visiting the fruit processing farm facility of Arbovitis with a product tasting of their locally produced juices, wines and dried fruits. Location: Frick
- We then continued our outing with the organic agroforestry farm of Biohof Schär which combines laying hens in a production system with a hazelnut orchard. Location: Brittnau
- Last, but not least, we also visited the organic agroforestry farm Eulenhof which has many years of experience in cultivating and processing fruits and wild fruits in agroforestry systems. Location: Möhlin
- End of excursion: Basel, 16:00 on 2 September
Excursion 3 (former 4) |Taste the Waste: Reducing food waste and creating circular food systems
On average, a third of our food is lost or wasted between farm to fork. Reducing food waste and creating a circular food system are key to reducing the environmental impact of our food system. This excursion provided a deeper insight into the flaws of our current food system regarding the creation of food waste and looked at circular economy solutions. During the excursion, participants visited sites where food waste or by-products are generated and explored innovative solutions that reduce or reuse such products.
- We kicked off the excursion with the biogas plant of the Recycling Energie AG and discovered the sheer amount of food waste produced. Location: Nesslnbach
- We then carried on with the community-supported organic farm, Birsmattenhof, and learned how they try to reduce food waste and by-products with innovative ideas. Location: Therwil
- Finally, we headed towards the social enterprise of Backwarenoutlet that combines the fight against food waste with social economy and shows that every roll counts when saving food. Location: Basel
- End of excursion: Basel, 16:00 on 2 September
Ticket prices for the Organics Europe Youth Event 2022:
- Standard fee – Youth (under 40 years old): 130 CHF
- Standard fee – over 40 years old: 200 CHF
- Reduced fee – Student, unemployed, trainee, other budget constraints (under 40 years old): 80 CHF
- Excursion ticket: 100 CHF (including transportation, visits, accommodation, and food – breakfast, lunch, and dinner)
This event is co-financed by the LIFE programme of the European Union, under the under the under the European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA). The sole responsibility for this event lies with IFOAM Organics Europe. The CINEA is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information provided.