Organic Agriculture

The concept of organic farming and agroecology is a response to the negative effects of traditional agriculture. In industrialized countries, modern agriculture with its maximization of yields and the use of inputs, generates high environmental and health problems, often without addressing the basic needs neither of producers nor of consumers. In developing countries, besides promoting environmental degradation, modern agricultural technologies have disregard the circumstances and socio-economic needs of large numbers of poor farmers.

Agroecology is defined as the application of the concepts and principles of ecology to the design, development and management of sustainable agricultural systems. It comes to scientifically design new concepts and technologies in agriculture, on the basis of current methods of ecological knowledge and traditional principles of conservation of natural resources, that many rural communities have and which cover their food needs without requiring large external inputs for their productive cycle. The purpose is agricultural production based on the conservation of natural resources such as soil, water and biodiversity, on an inclusive ethical basis.

In Chile, as has happened in other countries, the production and consumption of organic products is increasing. Currently, these are sold mostly in specialized shops and markets, but also in supermarkets and other mass channels. While prices are still higher than those of traditional agriculture the public that is willing to pay for it is growing, due to the interest for health and sustainable development.

In the Agroecological School in Pirque, the technical curriculum, ie, all those subjects that, as agricultural school, make up the differentiated curriculum, are based on agroecology, both for the production vegetable and to the animal management; hence the whole production of the School is organic. We are currently undergoing certification of our products.

This formative approach has allowed our students to perform in companies operating under an organizational perspective, and even train other people in managing organic farms, family and medicinal orchards, under the wing of projects developed by the Foundation.

It is our goal that our students become, if desired, small organic farmers, ideally able to add value to their products to enter the gourmet market where the demand of these is higher than supply. This business model has been followed by many developed countries, and in our view it represents a global trend. For this reason and as a complement to the work setting, we deliver to our youth tools as financial education and project management, so they can work and live according to their expectations.