#Agriculture #Regenerativeagriculture #Soilbiodiversity #Sustainablepractices #Agriculturalinnovation #Soilhealth #Estonianagriculture #Knowledgesharing
In Estonia, the promotion of regenerative agriculture faces a major obstacle – a lack of specialists, as highlighted by Tanel Vahter, a researcher at the University of Tartu. Recognizing growing interest among farmers in regenerative practices, Wachter emphasizes the need for increased collaboration between scientists and farmers to bridge the gap between research and production.
The need for soil restoration
“Estonia’s poorer fields correspond to the problems faced by other fields in Europe,” emphasizes Wachter. Despite declining trends in soil biodiversity comparable to their European counterparts, Estonian soils show, on average, higher biodiversity. However, Wachter warns of growing resource depletion that requires attention.
Wachter highlights a key obstacle: a lack of clarity about how new techniques specifically improve biodiversity in specific areas. Lack of measurable results prevents widespread adoption. To address this issue, Wachter emphasizes the importance of making scientific results accessible to all manufacturers.
Objective indicators for stimulating innovation
“Objective metrics will encourage experimentation and adoption of new practices,” says Wachter. Ongoing efforts at the University of Tartu aim to develop solutions that provide farmers with clear metrics and promote a more informed and confident approach to regenerative agriculture.
To get an idea of the real state of soil life, the University of Tartu will initiate comprehensive soil sampling this year, involving the active participation of farmers. Wachter encourages farmers to participate in this research, emphasizing that objective data can spur experimentation and innovation.
European cooperation in agricultural innovation
Marco Kass, Deputy Director of the Rural Knowledge Centre, highlights their multi-faceted support for regenerative agriculture. The Center actively participates in the European Union’s EIP-AGRI innovation network, in particular in the focus group “Regenerative Agriculture for Soil Health”.
Kass highlights the importance of long-term crop rotation experiments at the Kuusiku Experimental Farm, exploring the impact of organic and organic farming requirements on soil life. These experiments provide insight into reducing the use of chemical pesticides in conventional agriculture.
Solving soil problems
At the international regenerative agriculture forum “Healthy Soil for Success,” organized by the NGO Northen Root in Tallinn, experts from the Americas, Canada, England and other countries are collaborating with Estonian farmers to explore new options for restoring the country’s depleted lands.
Estonia’s path to regenerative agriculture requires a collective effort combining scientific expertise, innovative practices and active cooperation between researchers and farmers. The path to sustainable agriculture involves understanding the specific challenges each field faces and adopting practices that promote long-term soil health.