European Grassland Federation EGF
24th EGF General Meeting on Grassland – a European resource?
EGF 2012 was a success. 313 participants from 40 different countries were attending the 24th EGF General Meeting held 3-7 June 2012 in Lublin, Poland.
40 young scientists registered for master classes and 100 experts participated in a series of workshops on selected topics and took part to the excursions prior to the workshops. The offered pre- and post-conference tour were booked by 25 people.
The proceedings, volume 17 of the book in the series Grassland Science in Europe, contains 204 papers (see Proceedings).
Decisions by the EGF Executive Committee and the EGF Business Meeting, recpectively:
- EGF will establish a Scientific Advisory Board for consultation on strategic and scientific aspects.
- EGF established contact with the EU (DG AGRI) to be maintained in the future.
- EGF elaborated EGF Resolutions (download here ) on the CAP reform and sent them to the EU.
Elections to the Executive Committee:
- President: Marshall (United Kingdom) for the period 2012-2014
- Regional representatives: Countries to represent EGF regions 2012-2014
- Northern Europe – Finland
- North Eastern Europe – Estonia
- Eastern Europe – Bulgaria
- South Eastern Europe – Bosnia/Herzegovina
- Federation Secretary: Kessler (Switzerland) re-elected for 2012-2014
16th EGF Symposium on Grassland farming and land management systems in mountainous regions
EGF 2011 was a big success. More than 200 delegates from 30 different countries attended the 16th EGF symposium, which was held 28-31 August 2011 at AREC Raumberg-Gumpenstein, Austria.
The Agricultural Research and Education Centre Raumberg-Gumpenstein (AREC) offered ideal conditions, and the organisers created a fantastic environment for a successful conference. The atmosphere and surroundings were unique. But above all very competent experts were responsible for the organization and execution of the event. Congratulations and thank you Karl Buchgraber, Erich Poetsch and Bernhard Krautzer and the whole team for the great success and for the warm hospitality.
Mountainous areas make up 30 % of Europeans total land area. Apart from forests, natural and managed grasslands are the dominating vegetation in these areas. In terms of the production function mountain grasslands are often characterised as disadvantaged land areas. But in terms of landscape and ecosystem services, mountainous grasslands are a valuable resource for society. However production as well as the other functions are threatened by the consequences of economic pressure on farmers, inadequate farm structure, globalisation of markets and processes like climate change, intensification and land abandonment.
- The conference synthesis by Prof. Dr. Johannes Isselstein can be downloaded from here.
- The presentations of invited and offered papers are published on the EGF 2011 Website
23rd EGF General Meeting on Grassland in a Changing World
The organisers of the 23rd EGF General Meeting and the German Grassland Society (AGGF) welcomed 400 participants at Kiel from 29 August to 2 September 2010. They made the EGF 2010 conference to all attendants a memorable event.
The mellow atmosphere of late summer provided a perfect environment for a successful arrangement and some of the most beautiful sites of Germany impressively presented themselves showing their diverse landscapes as well as variable forage crops.
Forage crops, covering more than 40 % of the agricultural land in Germany, play an important role in maintaining landscape biodiversity, besides being the backbone in feeding many domestic animals, e.g. cattle, sheep and horses. Only recently have they started to become a source for biogas production. Due to the increasing competition with alternative forage crops as e.g. maize produced for milk production, the share of permanent grassland is, however, decreasing in Germany. Thus, ecosystem services of permanent grassland beyond production functions play a dominant role in current discussions on the future of grassland and grass-arable rotations are discussed intensively in order to develop sustainable forage production systems for milk production.
- Please find the “Conclusions and reflections from the 23rd General Meeting of the European Grassland Federation” by Josef Nösberger (Switzerland) here
- All the presentations and posters are published on the EGF 2010 Website
15th EGF Symposium on Alternative Functions of Grassland
At the congress lasting from 7 to 9 September 2009 in Brno (Czech Republic) a wide range of issues concerning changes in the role of grassland especially with regard to the specific features of countries with a high proportion of arable land and a low proportion of grassland and with respect to the impact on some social and economic conditions of new member countries of the European Union (decrease in the number of ruminants and the level of animal production as a whole) were discussed. The discussion also included ideas about how to retain, maintain and utilise grassland in areas where its use for animal production will not be a top priority.
Czech Republic is one of the countries with a high share of arable land and low proportion of permanent grassland. But grassland is decreasingly used in animal production. This raises new questions and offers new alternatives in land use and utilisation of grassland biomass. The main goal of the Symposium therefore was to discuss several alternative functions of grassland: the importance of grassland as aesthetic landscape element and attractive space for recreation and sports activities, and the value of grasslands as source of bio energy. Also the methods for preserving different permanent grassland types were given attention.
The Symposium was organised by OSEVA PRO Ltd., Grassland Research Station Rožnov-Zubří ( www.oseva.cz), Research Institute for Fodder Crops, Ltd., Troubsko ( www.vupt.cz) under the auspices of the Minister of agriculture and in co-operation with the Czech Academy of Agricultural Sciences.