On 9th of June 2020, a technical visit was conducted to Monte do Seixo, in Castro Verde, Portugal which focused on good practices of sustainable agriculture. Monte do Seixo was identified as a good example of agroecological practice in the initial survey of the trAEce project being carried out in Portugal.
After the invitation of GAIA – Environmental Action and Intervention Group, the owners Jacinto and Marta led the group of representatives from the Municipality of Castro Verde and Mértola, the Campo Branco Producers Association, and the Nature Protection League LPN and ESDIME, a local development NGO.
The visit focused on describing the impact of rainwater retention ditches at the level curve, that have been formed 8 years ago, and the impact of rotating grazing practice. The construction of those swales required only a plow, which is a common equipment of farmers. This simple solution follows the principle of Keyline technique developed by the Australian engineer P.A.Yeomans, with the difference that the latter requires a specialized plow at great cost.
At the end of the visit, a brief meeting was held where the participants recognized the value of the practices observed and expressed their interest in looking for ways of collaboration in order to prepare replications. The next step is to organize a study visit aimed at producers in the region, as well as an upcoming meeting organization to structure other concrete actions.