Agro-ecology: agricultural practices and an ethics of life

At the association Terre & Humanisme agro-ecology contains two inseparable aspects: preserving the earth/soil that feeds us, our ‘terre nourricière’, and the awakening of humanism. Terre & Humanisme was created in 1994 under the name of ‘Amis de Pierre Rabhi’, Friends of Pierre Rabhi, in 1999 renamed Terre & Humanisme (hereafter T&H).

Terre & Humanisme

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Small seeds’ producers preserving biodiversity and food variety

The association Kokopelli works with several local and mostly small producers to grow plants, herbs, and vegetables for their organic seeds. This means that different varieties are grown that have almost been lost and/or have been evacuated by the agro-business. Just think of the different types of cucumbers one can find in a supermarket, usually only two: ‘normal’ and organic! On a yearly basis Kokopelli takes stokes of the need for certain types of seeds and checks with its network of small producers who can grow which seeds for that year. Continue reading

Oasis Carapa – going to the roots in the middle of the forest

This Oasis is part of  ‘Oasis en Tous Lieux’ founded by Pierre Rabhi. The so called ‘éco-hameau’ or ecological hamlet was founded in 1995 on a terrain made available to this project by the ‘Centre Ecologique de Vaugran’ in the Cevennes, the owner of the domain. The domain consists of 15 hectares, of which 12 in usufruct and 3 in collective ownership (in a Groupement Foncier Agricole). The name Carapa comes from a tree in the Amazon, which is highly appreciated for its oil and has many applications. Continue reading

The Eco Etho Research & Education Centre 

(website in English and French) at the mountain top ‘La Combe’ (900 meters), near Bezaudun sur Bine, surrounded by three mountains, called ‘les becs’, is an extension of the Eco Farm established in 1996 at Little Ash Eco Farm.

the farm at La Combe - inspirational surroundings!

It moved in December 2003 to set up and run an experimental Ecological Farm and Nature Reserve in the mountains of the pre-Alps in La Drôme. This is the fifth experimental / demonstration ecological farm that they have developed. The Centre and farm are set up and ran by Marthe Kiley-Worthington and Chris C. Rendle. They give advice on how improved welfare and quality of life of domestic and captive animals can be achieved. They work for governments, private individuals, zoos, circuses, national parks, nature reserves, farmers and NGO’s all over the world and publish widely.

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Obituary to Michel Valentin – Les Amanins

The staff of Les Amanins informed me that the founder of Les Amanins, Michel Valentin, has passed away at the age of 56 on Sunday 13 May, just a week after my visit to Les Amanins – see story on this blog.

Michel Valentin in the shop of Les Amanins

The heritage of Michel Valentin is of great importance to our notion of how we can create ecology that serves both nature and humans. I wish all the people involved in Les Amanins strength in these days and, as I met them, trust that they will carry on this wonderful life project that Michel Valentin has created for the benefit of others.


Les Amanins:

learning about ecology and taking on responsability

A remarkable project is the association ‘Les Amanins’. This modern agro-ecological centre, created in 2005 by Michel Valentin and Pierre Rabhi, is an excellent example showing how eco-systems can work for food production, our living and working together. Ecology at Les Amanins means taking care of both the environment and the human relations. Continue reading