João Corbett of Seresin Estate was interviewed for the 2021 Spring issue of Harvests Magazine, in the interview he talks through the benefits of Demeter Certification from his perspective as an agricultural engineer and his experience working on a vineyard. For access to the full article and other perks, become a Member of Biodynamics New Zealand.
Why did Seresin Estate chose to become certified with Demeter?
Seresin Estate has been Demeter Certified since 2010 for a matter of principle and ethos. Michael Seresin always wanted the farms to follow organics and biodynamic principles. As he would say, “If we can do it, why not?”. To be certified brings it to a different level of commitment and challenges but along with this, high quality products and worldwide recognition. I guess it is better to be certified although embracing the principles of BD that are paramount.
How do you treat your farm as an integrated organism?
First and foremost, treating we treat it equally and not segregating areas. Observation is the most important part of it in my opinion, so we can identify where there’s both lack or surplus of vigor or diversity, then we respond to our observations to bring balance.
Diversity is very important and working with the different plants (vines, olives, pinoli trees, cover crops and natives), domesticated animals and native/wildlife. We facilitate and allow for these natural relationships among all these beings so that natural cycles and nutrients maintain balance.
What is one of your favorite biodynamic practices that you do for your land?
My favorite practice is having new people on board and stir some CPP, 500 or 501. Or simply building a compost pile or making a compost tea with the use of the preparations and introducing them to this fantastic, complex and ancient way of farming. It encourages me to spread the word of a more hands on and holistic approach on how we treat our planet and ourselves.
Farming biodynamically is very complex, labor intensive and there are not just one or two preparations that makes this method so powerful. Its the combination of all these tools/practices and our interaction with the land we are responsible for that makes Biodynamics so worth while.