Resilient Food systems
Agroecology, sustainable land use, and systems thinking underpin the pathways to resilient food systems. Water quality, maintenance of biodiversity, and reducing emissions are key focus areas for innovation and development.
Indigenous knowledge and food sovereignty are integral parts of long-term viable food production and supply. The Māori agribusiness sector is distinctive and offers unique insights and opportunities for collaborative models.
Integrating people, communities, and values with primary production systems can ultimately result in a rich and multi-cultural approach to food systems.
The program is delivered in Te Waipounamu the South Island of New Zealand.
Students live and travel together with faculty and staff. We have a home base in Golden Bay for half the semester, and we are away for a number of weeks on extended field trips.
Each week has a theme closely related to the particular land-use, agriculture practices and produce of the locality we are in. Field visits and the associated learning opportunities focus on topical, real-time case studies in a variety of production systems (including a variety of cropping systems) and agribusiness.
Lectures, tutorials, discussions, peer-teaching, assignments and project work are all part of the program. To gain practical skills and experiences, and to increase competency in farm and food systems related work, students will be on farm / agribusiness placements for a total of 20 working days (two placements of 10 days each) as part of the ‘Agricultural production and business practice’ course. Students will be at these placements with several peers, accompanied by a staff member. During these farm placements faculty will visit all teams and be available to students.
We have at least one overnight stay on a marae during each semester, which allows a glimpse into Māori culture and traditions.
Successful completion of at least 36 semester credit hours (or equivalent) of college or university studies, including at least one semester course related to agriculture production and management (such as Sustainable Agriculture, Horticulture, Animal Science, Agroecology, or equivalent courses), and at least one related to Agricultural Business, Environmental Economics, or Food and Society.
A moderately high degree of physical fitness, including the ability to work outside for extended periods in all weather.
Agreement with the fundamental principles of intensive study, group cooperation, sustainability ethics, and personal responsibility that are central to the EcoQuest living and learning environment.