By marketing products that come from nature and landscape management farmers get an added value for their products as a reward for ecologically sound and traditional methods of farming. In these three example project Lifescape shows how people can earn money out of the traditional landscape they are preserving at the same time.
Branding the bocage landscape
The Parc Naturel Régional (PNR) de l‘Avesnois, France, uses the landscape identity to brand and market sustainably produced local products. With this the PNR encourages the farmers to keep using their traditional methods of farming in order to maintain the typical bocage landscape. The bocage is a landscape basically composed of pastures surrounded by hedgerows, with small woodlands as an additional element. It is a cultural landscape formed by farmers but nowadays not a very economical viable landscape anymore. By branding products as beef, apples and milk with the brand ‘Produit de Parc Régional Naturel d‘Avesnois‘ farmers get added value for their products so they are awarded for their efforts in conserving the hedgerow landscape in a financial way. Farmers who want to participate and use the Park‘s brand sign an agreement on their production methods. The project is a combined experiment with the use of labels, the role of awareness-raising and the possibility to create distribution networks, all as complementary elements of a single strategy to promote the market share of branded landscape products.
Contact: Parc Naturel Régional (PNR) de l‘Avesnois, E-mail Maria Somocurcio, telephone 0033 327775266
South Downs Branding Initiative
The South Downs Branding Initiative ensures landscape conservation through extensive agricultural management. The South Downs Brand encourages local people to buy local produce from local suppliers and understand the many benefits of so doing.One initiative is the South Downs Lamb project, which was set up to encourage the regeneration of chalk grassland that was lost when large tracts of downland were ploughed for post-war intensification. This project started with communicating to farmers the financial benefits of participating in the South Downs Branding Initiative, because the returns for South Downs lamb would be bigger than for non-branded meat. Without such knowledge they would probably not have changed their farming system. Consumers now recognise the benefits to their local landscape and buy the product assured of traceability, animal welfare and quality.The Kempen heath sheep project in the Netherlands has a very similar structure as the South Downs Branding Initiative. It has been a valuable experience for them to learn much from the experience gained in England because they can implement the lessons learnt quickly.
Contact: South Downs Branding Initiative, www.southdowns.gov.uk
Branding by-products from of hedge management
The Parc Naturel Régional de Marais et Cap d‘Opale has investigated the added value of landscape products through conducting a feasibility study. Farmers have been involved to assess whether they are interested in using by-products from their hedges as combustible heating. In order to know if and how these by-product from the farms can be used, more investigations have taken place: are the hedges sufficient to be used as heating combustible in the farm, are they well-managed to constitute a sustainable energy for the farmers, what would be the cost (budget and time) for the farmers to install a wood heating, what are their needs in term of energy for the house, for the farm buildings et cetera?
Contact: Parc Naturel Régional de Marais et Cap d‘Opale
E-mail Axelle Triplet & Marion Molveaux (for bocage maintenance and farming)
E-mail Thierry Mougey (for natural reserve management)
Telephone 0033 321879090