ifoam'96 ifoam'96
Book of Abstracts
11th IFOAM Scientific Conference
11-15 August 1996, Copenhagen, Denmark
EcoWeb Denmark

Organic World

Baltic States, Belorussia and the Russian Federation O1

Mennen, Hartwig1; Sviridov, Alexandr2

1) LOGO e.V., Sternenburgstr. 106, 53115 Bonn, Germany 2) Grodno Agricultural Institute, Tereshkova Str. 28, 230 600 Grodno, Belorussia

Starting point: In Eastern Europe important political, economical and social changes resulted from the breakdown of the totalitarian systems. The old values of socialism are no longer valid. Many persons have reduced their interest to their own private life and live with no perspective for the future. Development in general faces the obstacles of old power structures, a high rate of criminality and the lack of self-confidence and responsibility of many people. In many regions, the ecological situation is depressing, due to bad management in agriculture, an ongoing immission of pollutants and environmental catastrophes. In some countries a private agricultural sector has begun to develop.
However, the new farms are frequently not profitable, because of a lack of technical equipment and of experience of their managers. In Western and Central Europe too, the prevailing methods of agriculture are increasingly questioned. Changes in agricultural production and in the treatment of the environment are necessary.
Present Situation for organic agriculture: In the states of the former Soviet Union mineral fertilizers have become very rare and expensive Pesticides often have to be imported. So these products cannot be used economically and many farms work without them. The farmers and the agricultural researchers are interested in the methods for organic agriculture for better and safer yields. The development of organic farms, their certification and of organic organisations is slow. Many consumers from the local markets are very poor and are not able to pay higher prices for ecological products. The consumers have not enough informations about production methods and food quality.

Estonia: Estonian Biodynamical Association (EBA)63 certified farms , 56 in conversion (12/95), average size 26 ha,

Latvia: Latvian Biodynamical Association30 certified farms, 30 in conversion, (2/96), average size 30 - 40 ha,

Lithuania: Gaja 6 certified farms, 30 in conversion (2/96), average size 13 ha.
Belorussia and Russian Federation: In these countries no IFOAM member organizations are known. In the agricultural institutes of Grodno, Welikie Luki and Moscow new curricula in the course »Agronom Ekolog« will be introduced. Subjects in Grodno will be: philosophical aspects fundamental aspects of ecology ecological problems in Belorussia geochemical ecology basics of environmental protectionecological farming plant protection ecotoxicology economics basics of ecological laws basics of ecological plant breeding
A serious problem in these institutes is the lack of adequate literature.International scientific journals and books often are too expensive for a subscription.
Tasks of LOGO In the non-profit making organization »Agriculture and Ecological Balance with Eastern Europe« LOGO e.V. farmers, agronomists, scientists and other interested persons work together to support a more sustainable agriculture and ecological activities in Central and Eastern Europe. LOGO works in direct contact with agricultural education and consulting institutions in Eastern and Central Europe. Together with these partners, the following actions are planned: 1) Programmes for further education (practical training and seminars) for students of agronomy and young experts on organic farms in Germany 2) Practical training for German experts in Eastern and Central Europe. 3) Technical tours for farmers 4) Provision of literature and know how in organic farming 5) Support of organic farms and model projects 6) Promotion of decentralized marketing structures 7) Public relations work
At present LOGO and LOGO Hessen cooperate with agricultural institutes in Rodno, Gorkij (Belorussia), Barnaul, Ekaterinburg, Kostroma, Rasnojarsk, Novosibirsk, Omsk, Perm, Pensa, Saratov, St. Petersburg, Tscheljabinsk, Ufa (Russian Federation) and Shitomir(Ukraine).