Liivimaa Lihaveis, an Estonian NGO, connects around 50 farmers who have great love and respect for nature. Our common desire is to grow happy cattle in their inherent environment - strolling around the great grasslands. The Baltic area does not have high mountains nor deep lakes, but we do have grasslands more diverse than any rainforests, containing more than 70 species per square meter. It is therefore our task to rightfully sustain and cherish these lands. Relying on this purpose, Liivimaa Lihaveis has created a governmentally certified quality scheme - ensuring welfare of the animals and sustaining the biodiversity on our diverse grasslands. Every single member is certified organic producer.
The quality scheme promotes the grazing of Angus, Hereford, and Simmental breed cattle in organic-certified farms. Throughout the grazing period, animals under the scheme must be on pastured on grassland, and during winter the cattle must have the freedom to move freely. In the summer period, cattle are grazed on land of which 50% is permanent grassland. In the winter period, animals must be provided a dry and clean place to sleep, water and enough hay and silo for every separate age group. Feeding any grain to the cattle is disallowed.
Liivimaa Lihaveis buys less animals but with the highest price of the market. Meat is sold on the basis of a true story, placing an emphasis on how animals live, what they eat, how good it is for the environment and human health. The focus on the animal diet which consists of very diversified grassland gives special and intensive taste to the meat and keeps the diversification on the grasslands.
Eosta (Europe’s leading specialist in organic fruits and vegetables, based in the Netherlands) developed the Nature & More system as an innovative approach to connect consumers with (organic) growers, their personal stories and sustainability efforts.
Products that are part of the Nature & More Trace & Tell System bear a three-digit code which, when entered on the Nature & More website, provides detailed information on the operations and efforts of the farmer, including photos and video.
Through our integrated sustainability model, the Sustainability Flower, we show the impact of the production in 6 categories: Climate, Water, Soil, Biodiversity, Health and Social Coherence. In many cases, we also calculated the value of these impacts in terms of money, so-called True Cost Accounting. In this way we allow consumers to compare the impacts of organic food with non-organic food and make responsible choices.
The result is clear: organic is not too expensive, but conventional is too cheap!
Do you have an initiative that makes food & farming systems across Europe fair, environmentally conscious, healthy & caring?Click here to submit your own initiative!