Most mountain pastures in Italy are underutilized or even abandoned due to urbanization, low in - comes, limited social opportunities for rural families. A three years research was done on the rehabilitation of some pastures in two farms of North-Western Tuscany, central Italy. During the first part of the trial some agro- nomic interventions were compared (new pasture fencing, potato cash crop sowing, sowing and oversowing a pasture mixture of grasses and legumes, chemical fertilization mainly nitrogen, planting scattered forage trees), at the end of the agronomic trial 20 more farmers of the area were invited to visit the trials and discuss the results in order to know the level of their appreciation of the interventions done and their further demands. The agronomic interventions more appreciated were the new fencing and shrubs clearing, and the one year cash crop. The farmers had less appreciation for fertilization and oversowing, and very little appreciation for the new planting of scattered forage trees. Under a general point of view however, social actions were demanded much more than agronomical. People asked better and faster links to the near towns, better possi- bilities to publicize and sell their produce straight to customers by internet, they asked the development of local small scale industries that can process milk for sale and to make cheese, less limitations in starting and man- aging agri-tourism activities
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Founded in 1962, the CIHEAM is a Mediterranean intergovernmental organisation devoted to the sustainable development of agriculture and fisheries, food and nutrition security and rural and coastal areas.