#26 Holistic grazing and acorn fed pigs in the Portuguese montado with Francisco Alves


Manage episode 299425593 series 2777935
By Dimitri Tsitos & Etienne Compagnon, Dimitri Tsitos, and Etienne Compagnon. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Francisco Alves manages 700ha of montado, a traditional agroforestry system of Southern Europe, with herds of cattle, goats, sheep and the famous Alentejo pig. His experience at Herdade Sao Luis exposes us to the future of recently planted silvopastural systems. We discuss important topics such as how mature trees interact with pasture, the optimum tree quantity per hectare, how they contribute to his animals' health and growth, as well as the key management constraints.

On top of this, Francisco is using the holistic management technique for animal grazing. This enables him to regenerate his soil and pasture, limit damage of animals to seedlings, clearing bramble regrowth and preparing field seeding all with his diverse animal herds.

Overall, Francisco is extremely enthusiastic about having mature trees in his grazing system, and sees a huge benefit as compared with open pasture.

As always, 1h30 was too short to ask him all the questions we wish we could. Enjoy!


01:50 Introduction to Farm

14:40 Holistic management and animal system description

24:30 The pig's function, description of system, and feeding on acorns

31:10 Goats, sheep and cows and the economics of diversifying animal species

39:30 Tree density per hectare, managing this unique agro-ecosystem

42:45 Economic flexibility with diversity, and commercialisation

48:20 Interactions between trees and animals

01:02:20 Optimum tree quantity per hectare for pasture production and microclimates

01:08:40 Learning about and designing silvopasture systems

01:12:30 Tree fodder on the farm and oak pruning

01:20:40 Using animals to manage forest regrowth and keep the pasture productive




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32 episodes