Our Keynote speaker has been announced for the upcoming Talkin’ Soil Health Conference in York on 11 August. Andre Leu, the International Director of Regeneration International, has over the last 40 years visited and worked in more than 100 countries. Leu has acquired an extensive knowledge of farming and environmental systems across Asia, Europe, America, Africa and Australia. He has firsthand knowledge of soil health from working on his organic tropical fruit farm in the Daintree Rainforest, QLD, with his wife, Julia.
Andre was invited to Talkin’ Soil Health to set the scene and share an optimistic global outlook of the future of farms that improve soil health. Andre defines healthy soil as having "good levels of soil fertility, soil structure, aeration, water infiltration, and holding capacity, and by low levels of pests, weeds, and disease cycles.”
The keynote presentation will address global trends in food production including the consumer, investment, banking sectors and give insight into how big companies and farmers are responding to these trends. Andre will talk about; traceability and verification systems, partnerships rather than competition, and farmer-controlled systems that are price-maker rather than price-taker.
Andre will touch on; improving water use efficiency, building resilience to climate extremes, animal welfare and productivity, reduction of pesticide and fertilizer use, natural capital accounting and land stewardship. Examples from different climatic regions across the world will be given.
Farmers face the challenge of persisting climate changes and extreme weather affecting their ability to be sustainable. The more resilient our soils are the better able they can handle extreme weather events. There are changes that can be made to farming systems with easy first steps and no risk.
" We can improve our farming systems, reduce input costs, increase our production levels and build resilience to adverse climate events without difficulties or major costs. We have more than 100 years of proven evidence, based on numerous methods developed by farmers and now validated by science. It is easy to learn the basic principles of these regenerative practices, apply them to your farm and to understand why there has never been a better time to farm." says Andre.
The presentation will provide evidence and practice-based initiatives that farmers can use to adapt their farming systems and small steps that follow on from Andre’s concept, that, “soil is a complex, living microbiome. It needs to be managed as a living system, not as a dead inert mixture of chemicals.
View our program here.
Reserve your ticket to the Talkin’ Soil Health Conference here.
This project is supported by funding from the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR), the State Natural Resource Management Project and Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.