Increasing global understanding of the impact and effects of climate change has seen increasing emphasis and pressure on reducing carbon emissions across the supply chain. However, when it comes to agriculture it is not always easy to implement the necessary changes due to various factors such as cost barriers, and a lack of understanding about where emissions are coming from and how they can be reduced. There is a common perception that reducing carbon emissions will be both costly and difficult, requiring changes to existing systems that have no additional benefit to the farm.
This is in fact, not the case. At farm level, carbon emissions and input cost savings go hand in hand. Measuring and reducing emissions at farm level can have a significant effect on reducing a farm’s input and operating costs. What’s more, making these reductions does not necessarily require costly investments into capital intensive equipment. This can be clearly illustrated by Boschendal Farm in the Western Cape.
Boschendal’s commitment to farming sustainably is evident the minute you enter the farm gates. The innovative and sustainable practices used throughout and the commitment to environmental and social sustainability is impressive. One of the innovative practices that has been employed by the farm is a new trellising system for plums. The case study below explores this innovation in greater detail, explaining how this reduces farm level carbon emissions, and how this is having a long-term positive effect on farming operations.
The case study can also be accessed in PDF format from the following link: Boschendal case study