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ISHS Acta Horticulturae 1137: International Symposium on Innovation in Integrated and Organic Horticulture (INNOHORT)

Social anchoring in the community and the design of viable organic market gardening microfarms

Authors:   F.G. Léger, K. Morel
Keywords:   France, agroecology, community involvement, short distribution chains, farming system
DOI:   10.17660/ActaHortic.2016.1137.38
Abstract:
Strong social movements are increasingly being built on concrete experiences such as organic market gardening microfarms to promote alternative food systems. The study of 12 French microfarms, based on semi-structured interviews and cross-disciplinary analysis, revealed that alternative microfarms rely upon access to available material and intangible resources in their social environment. Involvement in the community is a necessity and, at the same time, the way to solidify ecological and social aspirations that are essential in the farmers' projects. Classical techno-economic frameworks do not account for these non-market inputs. A larger conceptual framework based on concepts such as multifunctionality of agriculture, ecosystem services, and “double” sustainability is thus needed to analyze and assess the strategic choices of alternative organic microfarms.

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