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Several authors propose agroecology as a more sustainable strategy for livestock farmers, yet the relevance of agroecology to Flemish beef farms remains largely unexplored. The political economic conditions at each site do indeed demarcate the means and space the farmer has to implement agroecological principles, which calls for a foods systems approach. The farmer should not be depicted, however, as merely reacting to external forces: unlike any other economic sector, the properties of agricultural nature and human physiology provide scope for a diversity of practices to produce agricultural commodities. This consequently underlines the importance of analyzing the farmers’ understanding of their situation, and the actions they undertake to exploit, forgo, or expand this room for maneuver to pursue agroecological principles. This abstract describes a mixed-model approach, developed within a PhD research that studies to what extent agroecology is applied and can potentially be applied on Flemish beef farms. Our analysis seeks to reveal key relationships sustaining or limiting the implementation of agroecological principles at farm level. In the weeks leading up to the Belgian Agroecology Meeting, this method is tested in pilot interviews with beef farmers.
|Status||Gepubliceerd - 14-nov-2017|