Sneak Peek Book Release, Fertile Ground: Scaling Agroecology from the Ground Up
This spring we will be releasing our new book, Fertile Ground: Scaling Agroecology from the Ground Up. The book is edited by Steve Brescia, Executive Director of Groundswell International, and showcases the work we have been supporting with our partners around the world, as well as other allies, to build a food and farming system that is better for people and the planet. Agroecology, or ecological agriculture, focuses on regenerative farming practices that not only improve production while restoring the soil and other natural resources, but also strengthening the social fabric necessary for truly sustainable development to take root.
We are partnering with Food First to publish the book. Food First a non-profit organization that works to end injustices that cause hunger through research, education and action. We are releasing a policy brief adapted from the book’s chapter on Burkina Faso, West Africa.
Read the chapter excerpt below, download the full policy brief, and sign up to receive exclusive updates about the book’s release and how to pre-order a copy.
From Oases to Landscapes of Success: Accelerating Agroecological Innovation in Burkina Faso by Fatoumata Batta and Tsuamba Bourgou
Like many of his neighbors, Souobou Tiguidanla works in precarious environmental conditions to sustain a large extended family on a small farm where he primarily grows maize, millet, and sorghum. “In 2010 and 2011,” Souobou recalls, “we were hungry. Rainfall was poor and we were not able to produce enough food for ourselves.” The family could not survive on their own stores and had to buy from the market, knowing that this expenditure would reduce their ability to invest in next year’s crops. “Something needed to change,” Souobou knew, so he sought out training in agroecology from a local organization, and gradually began to adapt new methods that were not only more productive and environmentally beneficial, but also less costly.
The Association Nourrir Sans Détruire (ANSD, Nourish Without Destroying Association)—an organization which one of us (Bourgou) directs and the other (Batta) co-founded and partners with— has worked to support agroecological adaptation and innovation in the Eastern Region of Burkina Faso. By encouraging experimentation, recognizing innovation, and prioritizing decentralized farmer-to- farmer learning, ANSD has found pathways to more ecologically and economically viable livelihoods.