Kim Koster / Pieter Ploeg

A workshop hosted by Kim Koster en Pieter Ploeg

Are you interested in agriculture? In the ancient wisdom that farmers carry in their daily practice, or in new initiatives by young people and in innovative possibilities for the future? Do you care about the origin of our daily food? Would you like to listen to the stories of different contributors that are invited for this workshop and share your vision, thoughts and concerns? Then we would love to invite you for this workshop!

Your hosts Kim Koster and Pieter Ploeg will guide you through different themes and activities.

Day one: A lecture about sustainable agriculture by Johan D’hulster

Nowadays, sustainability is the new fashion-word. But have we ever thought about what real sustainability should mean? It is a concept that actually finds its home in agriculture. Sustainable agriculture lasts forever and even gets better throughout the years. It is based on cyclical processes that belong to a system and take into account the right balance between the diverse elements in the system. We should take into account the role of the cow, the necessity of a landscape, soil fertility, vitality and biodiversity.
Once these essential elements are connected, we may invite you to rethink our human physical condition, the climate problem, the intrinsic beauty of nature or whatsoever. We will try to understand the statement of a modern Indian sage, after his 25 years of deep meditation that “every problem of our world can be related to our human responsibility towards the animal kingdom, the plant kingdom and the soil or planet earth, and can be solved on the level of a farm”.
Johan D’hulster has been an organic farmer for more than 35 years, and has a keen interest in worldwide agricultural developments. He was a co-founder of the ‘Humane Agrarian Centre’ in India, aiming to give back the dignity to farmers and farmers wife’s, by re-installing the traditional Indian agricultural insights.

Day two: An excursion to a CSA farm

Two CSA (Community supported agriculture) farms are willing to welcome you at their farm for a guided tour, a talk and to provide some small tasks in which you can help them on the field. So don’t forget to bring some clothes and shoes for working!
Both farms have the aim to go back to local communities that provide our daily food.
The first group will go to “’Plukhof” from Els Vloeberghs. It’s a small farm where people can pick their own berries during summertime and have a look at the bees that are flying around.
The second group will go to “De hoeders van de aarde”. A new initiative by Jeff and Didier, two young guys that found a piece of land where they could experiment with their ideas of permaculture, living in community and bringing their dreams into action.

Day three: Facilitated by Pieter Ploeg and Kim Koster

Using the theoretical input from the first day and the practical experiences from the second day we will bring the focus to your thoughts, visions, questions and concerns. Through dialogue, exercises and outdoor activities we will try to build a context around the theme of agriculture, and help you to understand the input from the earlier days. This day depends very much on your input, so we encourage you strongly to bring your best!
Pieter Ploeg (29) is currently founding Common Soil Campus, a land restoration academy and regenerative agriculture learning lab. He is a graduate from the International Youth Initiative Program. Kim Koster (24) is currently studying Biodynamic and Organic Agriculture at Warmonderhof in the Netherlands and is a graduate from the International Youth Initiative Program.

Day four: Closing/harvest and a short talk by Clemens Gabriël

We will continue our process of understanding and aim to find closure for the workshop. Any open threads or questions, themes or discussions can be closed. Clemens Gabriël will bring a visit during this last day. He brings his knowledge about Biodynamic Agriculture and will tell something about his course for Biodynamic Agriculture in the Scandinavian countries.