What’s happening with Olio Caldo?

Jul 26, 14 What’s happening with Olio Caldo?

lebaj_gea_create_sustenibility copySATURDAY . CREATE SUSTAINABILITY

Olio Caldo is self-sufficiency in food and all ways of life.

The most recent manifestation of the Olio Caldo project paved the way towards food self-sufficiency with two milestones in recent years. A newly formed nucleo community with highly motivated citizens dedicated many volunteer hours to agriculture, with tangible results. The quality of vegetables improved and the cultivated surface doubled. Some vegetables were in exuberance especially when other nucleo community gardens were at their top production, thus decreasing demand for those from the farm. An important factor was the gradual transition of the responsibility to the most expert farmers in the community.

Damanhur belongs to everyone! #createsustainability

A second major change was the creation of a council for our food self-sufficiency, coordinating elements of food production in Damanhur: the agricultural cooperative, the natural foods store, all the nucleo communities with family gardens. This way of doing things not only created synergy, it also filled the needed leadership roles in our unique context. We are not a top-down business but a community with its own complexity and sometimes contradictions. Within the new council, we were able to unite our efforts, align strategies about what to plant in which season, in order to meet everyone’s needs. We considered prices and distribution within and outside the community, created visibility on the internet, educated about seasonal plants and their health benefits through the Damanhur newspaper.

We have a kind of hybrid model toward food self-sufficiency, a mixture of official production (in the agricultural cooperative) and internal production (family gardens), yet it is all run within community structures. Our official agricultural organization faces the complexities of market mechanisms, with financial and administrative requests from the Italian government, certification requisites for organic crops, etc. Though it’s been important to figure it out and make it work, as professional level cultivations can ensure food sufficiency for the community when needed.


What are you doing to ensure food self-sufficiency for yourself, your family and community?