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FiBL Germany

Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL)

Postal address:
P.O. Box 90 01 63, D-60441 Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Street address:
Kasseler Strasse 1a, D-60486 Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Telephone +49 69 7137699-0
Fax +49 69 7137699-9

info.deutschland(at)fibl.org
www.fibl.org

Activity Report 2012

FiBL Germany - scientific services to organic agriculture

FiBL Deutschland e.V. provides scientific services to organic agriculture, especially at the interface between research and agricultural practice. From this mandate it derives the four pillars of its work for organic agriculture and the organic food industry:

  • Knowledge transfer
  • Drawing up concepts to strengthen organic agriculture
  • Scientific support for actors in the field
  • Promotion of actor networks    

Making information accessible for users

Few in farming, processing, trade or consultancy today are in a position to absorb all the scientific findings on organic agriculture. There is a growing demand for this complex information to be made accessible via print media and on the internet. FiBL Deutschland e.V. tailors information on organic agriculture to the needs of specific target groups: for scientists, farmers and businesspeople, as well as for the general public.

Some examples are:

Approaches to strengthening organic agriculture

The aim of this work is to develop approaches by which to remove barriers currently impeding the further development of organic agriculture. Involvement of industry practitioners and interdisciplinary cooperation are vital in order to develop solutions which work in practice.

Some examples are:

Scientific support for actors in the field

FiBL Deutschland e.V. provides scientific expertise to actors in organic agriculture and the organic food sector for their projects and activities.

Some examples are:

  • development of proposals for position papers by the organic food production alliance, BÖLW (Bund Ökologische Lebensmittelwirtschaft)
  • coordination of the BÖLW expert committee on seed and plant breeding
  • checking the content of curriculum materials for secondary schools as part of the German Federal Scheme for Organic Farming
  • expert input to Friends of the Earth Germany (BUND), backing up its genetic engineering campaign
  • coordination of the project “Increasing the value added to organically grown market crops by optimizing soil fertility”

Promoting networking

The expansion of organic agriculture and the major increase in activities associated with this expansion, such as organic farming research, call for coordinated and effective cooperation on the part of all participants. FiBL Deutschland e.V. has set itself the goal of initiating and supporting networking processes in organic agriculture.

Some examples are:

  • a ‘Forum on plant protection in organic farming’ as a communication platform for stakeholders, advisory bodies and authorities
  • joint work in the BÖLW expert committee on issues concerning seed and plant breeding
  • work towards a uniform approval procedure for agricultural inputs with the aim of achieving widespread consensus among associations, inspection and certification bodies and authorities, nationally and internationally, on the approval of suitable inputs
  • running conferences and maintaining the website www.gruene-werkstatt.de for ‘green sector’ networking among workshops for people with disabilities
  • coordination of the network in organic vegetable production with the aim of improving communication between practitioners, advisors, researchers and scientists in organic vegetable production (www.biogemuesebau.net
  • pilot project of the German Federal Ministry of Consumer Protection, Food and Agriculture BMELV on networking sheltered workshops for handicapped persons with agricultural holdings (www.gruene-werkstatt.de/modellvorhaben/index.html)

Financing

FiBL Deutschland e.V. finances itself essentially through projects and services.  

Structure

At its Frankfurt headquarter currently employs twentyfive staff. The board consists of eleven members.

Team Germany

A high priority is placed on networking with actors and organizations involved in the organic food industry. FiBL Germany is an associate member of the German Federation of the Organic Food Industry (Bund Ökologische Lebensmittelwirtschaft, BÖLW) an member of the  International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM). Solid cooperation has been established with the Büro Lebensmittelkunde & Qualität (Institute for Food Science & Quality) and the Department of Organic Farming and Cropping of the University of Kassel in Witzenhausen. FiBL Germany is also initiator and founder member of the alliance for practical research "V.Ö.P." (Verbund Ökologische Praxisforschung) .