Proceedings: Biointensive management of the orchard understory
The concept of “sustainable agriculture” has become widely accepted by growers, consumers, and policymakers as an important guide for the future direction of food production systems. While we cannot know today what will be “sustainable” a century from now, the concept embodies three parts that help shape decisions in the present: economically viable, environmentally sound, and socially responsible. For orchardists, sustainability has mostly taken shape through increased emphasis on biointensive Integrated Pest Management (IPM). In Europe, growers have gone beyond IPM to Integrated Fruit Production, which considers sustainability issues for soil, water, and humans in addition to pests. In our region, the rapid expansion of organic fruit production represents a significant effort to address sustainability.