This meeting was organised with the Swiss Research Station Agroscope Changins-Wädenswil. 65 research fellows from 15 different countries have been reunited to exchange knowledge and to identify new challenges for the society during three days. “Integrated research for the sustainability of mountain pastures” is a large topic that needs to be focussed. Papers presented in the proceedings confirm the great diversity of mountain agriculture. Each region has animal breeders that maintain the landscape and drive the local economy. Like many farmers in other areas, those in mountains face relevant challenges to improve, or even maintain their competitiveness.
Agronomists and zoo technicians of the Mountain Pastures Network have contributed to develop best practices in general and in grassland management and grazing systems in particular, for over 45 years. The Network currently includes specialists from various disciplines such as ecology, sociology, economy, chemistry and processing. The whole supply chain from grassland to healthy food is covered.
A major objective of this meeting is to share results and methods that contribute to prove the high level of quality of mountainous dairy and meat (MDM) products. Moreover, the linkages between herd management, biodiversity and landscape preservation are to be clarified and made more explicit. This should positively influence consumers’ choices towards mountainous products.