Gure Lurra (Our Land): connecting the rural and urban worlds is key to a sustainable future
The Gure Lurra, Sembrando Futuro (Our Land, Sowing the Future) congress, held last November in San Sebastián, brought together different collectives to show the consequences of the disconnection between the rural and urban worlds. The event encouraged discussion of the need to generate a sustainable relationship between both worlds, to favour a healthy society with a sustainable future.
“The rural world isn’t so far away from the urban world, we need each other.”
In its third edition, the GURE LURRA congress –held on 27 November 2019 in Donostia– gathered together farmsteaders, cooks, businesses, local government representatives, etc., to give a voice to producers from the rural world, to show the different problems they face and to exhibit the consequences for society if we ignore the needs of the primary sector.
Jesús Calleja: “Small villages are great treasures waiting to be discovered”
After the inauguration led by Markel Olano, President of the Regional Government of Gipuzkoa, the communicator and adventurer Jesús Calleja set the conference in motion by telling of his own personal experiences. He said that “we should all look once in our lives for ‘that sublime moment’ when we carry out a much-desired project”. But, no matter how far his journeys take him, his favourite place of rest is his home village in León: “Small villages are great treasures waiting to be discovered,” places we should not forget about.
“Sometimes plain and ordinary things are healthy: an aubergine, a potato… The raw materials sector is going to lead the change towards healthy eating.” Aitor Sánchez.
The second speaker was Aitor Sánchez, dietitian and nutritionist, author of the book Mi dieta cojea (My Limping Diet). After explaining the errors which, due to the self-interested advice of advertisements, we often fall foul of when choosing and buying types of products, he explained the need to return to a more balanced diet. All the more when Spain is a country with a large agricultural basis which can more than cover our nutritional needs.
“Spain is a rural country. So, by emptying its villages, it’s losing a great cultural wealth.” Nel Cañedo.
Another speaker who left no one indifferent was Nel Cañedo, a shepherd from the Picos de Europa, well-known for his videos defending livestock and the rural way of life. “Spain is a rural country. So, by emptying its villages, it’s losing a great cultural wealth. We need to create social consciousness and make sure rural and urban areas maintain a sustainable relationship.” (You can see his contribution and those of other speakers at Gure Lurra 3 Congress by following this link)
“If we don’t support local producers, they’ll disappear.”
Throughout the day, there were many other interesting speakers, in three symposiums in which the current situation of the sector was debated. Producers, cooks, gastronomic journalists and representatives of producers’ associations of Gipuzkoa and the HORECA (Hotels, Restaurants and Cafés) association put forward their view of the situation and debated future needs.
The farmsteaders asked for their profession to be recognised and respected as an essential sector which maintains the Basque Country and our landscape and, to cut a long story short, sustains our culture. “The rural world isn’t so far away from the urban world, we need each other.
If we don’t support local producers, they’ll disappear. The level of production is going down and we need it to pick back up again.”
Getariako Txakolina and Gure Lurra
At Getariako Txakolina we agree that, although we are such close neighbours, farmsteaders and local producers are still the great unknowns. We must all work together and pull in the same direction so that local produce has presence at regional government and local events and festivals, has more visibility in hotels and catering, and that we enjoy it in our own homes. In short, let's know, respect and support those who look after Gure Lurra (Our Land).
We would like to highlight the perspective of two of our members, a viticulturist and a Txakoli producer interviewed by El Diario Vasco newspaper.
«Rural Tourism offers a unique experience to discover the countryside.” Interview with Joxe Mari Aramendi. Bodega Gañeta.
Interview with Nerea Lazkano. Bodega Basa Lore