Book of Abstracts
11th IFOAM Scientific Conference
11-15 August 1996, Copenhagen, Denmark
The Ecological Agriculture College, Åbybro, Denmark
Nearly all farms in Denmark are family-owned. 90% of all who work in agriculture, are also the owners of the farm. The production is based on a great export of meat and dairy products. The average size of the farms in Denmark is 38 ha. The education have to match this farming structure.
The education: The education is designed for people who want to be managers of their own farm. They have to be educated in all the different aspects of farming. There are 26 agricultureal colleges in Denmark. All of them have the same educational structure.
Module 1: 2 months course, 12 months practise, 4 months course.
Module 2: 18 months practise, 6 months course
Module 3: 14 months practise (in farming and other professions), 4 months course.
After passing the first two modules the students are educated »skilled farmers«. If they want to get the knowledge and education as »farmmanagers«, they have to pass module 3. As educated farm managers they have the right to buy and run a farm, and they get the possibility to get favourable credits from the state.
The Ecological Agriculture College: A group of ecological farmers took the initiative, and the college started up in 1982. Since it has developed, and is now a well established college. It is owned by a foundation, but state supported and acknowledged. There are about 50 students per year. The college include an ecological farm at the size of 80 ha, 65 dairy-cows, and selfsufficient with vegetables, eggs, dairy-products and meat.
The teaching: The concept of all teaching and farming is ecological farming and ecological lifestyle.We want the future ecological farmers to be active and learn how to solve problems in a new way. Because of that, the teaching here involve the students in solving theoretical and practical problems during project-oriented work and education.We try to encourage the creativity of the students to help them to be responsible for the future farming in Denmark.