Course: The Science of Sustainable Food Production

Centre for Alternative Technology

Machynlleth, Powys, Wales
Mon 15th - Sat 20th July 2019

courses.cat.org.uk courses@cat.org.uk +44 (0)1654 704966

Cost: Waged £750, Low Waged/Concessions £700.

Sectors: food, farming & horticulture, sustainability


For this course you will be joining a module of CAT's new Sustainable Food and Natural Resources MSc course.

You will study the biogeography of crops, and the importance of geographical climate, soil and water resources. The science of GMOs, energy crops, and food growing techniques such as permaculture, forest gardening, organic agriculture and conventional agriculture will be examined, including their impact on green-house gas emission, carbon sequestration, soil health, biodiversity and ecosystem services.

We will also focus on key scientific advances, debates and uncertainties in the science of sustainable food production and will examine data to draw conclusions.

Your week will include a series of lectures, supported by interactive seminars and practical activities. Lectures will draw on a wide variety of theoretical and applied topics with a wide use of case studies throughout.

Outline Syllabus:

  • Biogeography, historical and evolutionary contexts for crop production, including the growth on non-food crops.
  • Impact of crop production on green-house gas emissions, carbon sequestration, soil conservation and ecology, and wider ecosystem services.
  • Science of GMOs, organic agriculture, conventional agriculture, permaculture and other food production methods and technologies.

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