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Media release February 07, 2006

New technical guides for organic farming in English

The Organic Agriculture Centre of Canada (OACC) and the Swiss Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL) present five technical guides for farmers, students and advisers in the field of organic farming.

As a further effort to improve knowledge exchange and thus profitability and product quality in organic farming in Canada, the Organic Agriculture Centre of Canada (OACC) and the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FIBL) jointly published five technical guides. FiBL has been publishing attractive technical guides for a number of years, and they are an important source of information for farmers and advisers in Switzerland and several other countries, providing information on good organic farming practice.

Of the five guides that are presented, four are on fruit production: cultivation of bush berries, creation of dwarf-tree orchards, maintenance of dwarf trees and cultivation of standard orchards. The fifth guide is about weed control in organic vegetable production.

The guides were written by experts of FiBL, some of them in cooperation with experts of other Swiss research stations and organisations. Characteristics of the guides are their condensed, but still detailed information and the high quality of presentation.
The guides are translations of the original Swiss German edition and thus reflect European conditions and terminology. Therefore, OACC recommends that Canadian readers consider the suitability of the information for their farms and adapt it only with awareness of the context of the original conditions. OACC hopes that Canadian organic producers will nevertheless find much of the information beneficial.
The guides are available for download free of charge from the internet.
The guide on the cultivation of bush berries is also available in French.

Further information


Kathryn Bliss
Organic Agriculture Centre of Canada (OACC)
Nova Scotia Agricultural College
P.O. Box 550, Truro, NS B2N 5E3
Tel. 902-893-7256, Fax. 902-896-7095

Gilles Weidmann
Research Institute of Organic Agriculture FiBL
FiBL, Ackerstrasse, CH-5070 Frick,
Phone: +41 (0)62 865-7260, Fax: +41 62 865-7273

Order and Download - The Technical Guides

Creating a Dwarf-Tree Orchard
This technical report describes the various steps involved in the creation of an organic dwarf-tree orchard. It also illustrates how to tap into an orchard's ability to self-regulate by establishing habitats for beneficial fauna. In addition, it offers techniques to encourage tree development and simplify maintenance. (Order no. 0008)

Dwarf Tree Orchard Maintenance
This technical guide focuses on the information currently available on dwarf-tree orchard maintenance. It also provides advice on maintenance scheduling for organic production. (Order no. 0009)

Organic Cultivation of Standard Orchards
Standard orchards enrich the landscape and contribute significantly to its biodiversity. Although modernization has led to widespread abandon of this format, orchards with standard trees can prove to be an economically sound choice, especially for organic farms. This guide introduces the environmental and economic factors involved in producing and selling quality fruit. (Order no. 0006)

The Organic Cultivation of Bush Berries
This guide contains the most up-to-date knowledge on cultured blueberries. The provided information on the production of high-quality bush berries is practical and clearly laid out. Even though the guide is intended for the professional cultivation of berries, it is also perfectly suited for the cultivation of berries in domestic gardens. (Order no. 0010)

Weed Control in Organic Vegetable Cultivation
Weed control is a main focus in the organic farmer's strategy. Preventative measures can limit the negative effects of weeds and the related costs. The timing of these measures directly affects the amount of manual weeding that is needed and thus also the profitability of the crop. The guide informs about preventive and direct methods for weed control in organic vegetable cultivation. (Order no. 0007)

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