Doctor Roberto García Ruiz, professor at the University of Jaén and coordinator of the SUSTAINOLIVE project, has resumed visits to olive farms once trips between provinces have been allowed. The objective of these visits is to select farms that meet the criteria identified in the work area corresponding to the implementation and evaluation of sustainable technological solutions (STS) in demonstration farms. Several demonstration farms will be selected in each of the countries and regions of the consortium, including those where STSs have already been implemented (for at least 8 years), along with other control farms. These farms will be monitored in mutual coordination for a wide range of variables related to ecosystem services.
Specifically, last week the Spiritu Santo farm located in the municipality of Úbeda (Jaén) was visited. It is a 65 Hectare farm that has been producing and packaging its own oil with organic certification for 5 years. Its manager, Juan Molina, tells us about his obsession with closing the nutrient cycle and carbon sequestration on the farm, with practices such as the integration of livestock to control plant cover and promote biodiversity, the contribution of organic matter, use of by-products of the mill, water saving and other sustainable practices that are expressed in oils that are widely awarded internationally. To get to know his project better, you can connect with the following video: https://vimeo.com/92936837
The second visit was to the Cooperativa San Vicente, in the town of Mogón (Jaén), which produces the Puerta de las Villas Olive oil. In this case, it is a project that brings together 1,300 members who totally depend on the cultivation of the olive grove. They cover a total of 3,800 hectares in integrated and ecological production in the privileged environment of the Sierra de las Villas Natural Park, in contact with the Guadalquivir river and the Aguascebas river. Of the total of the plots, 60% have a slope of more than 20%, and all are managed like traditional olive groves. This cooperative has been committed for years to the quality of the oil and the sustainability of its crops. The project is led by José Gilabert, and by Mariadelmar Manrique, President and Manager of the Cooperative respectively.
SUSTAINOLIVE works in a collaboration agreement with all entities that work for the sustainability of the olive grove, facilitating experimental plots, developing communication, dissemination and training activities, as well as other actions that facilitate mutual learning and efficient collaboration.