One of the main objective of SustainFARM project is to evaluate the IFNS sustainability. A farm-level sustainability assessment tool, the Public Goods tool (PG Tool) was developed in UK in 2011. The tool is used across a number of “spurs”: soil management, agri-environmental management, landscape and heritage, water management, fertiliser management and nutrients (including calculation of a farm N,P,K budget), energy and carbon, food security, agricultural systems diversity, social capital, farm business resilience, and animal health and welfare management.
A comprehensive list of indicators specific to integrated food and non-food biomass production systems will be developed to add to the indicators already used in the PG tool to assess farm-level sustainability. Stakeholders at all levels of the supply chain including SMEs will be included in prioritisation workshops (at least one per country) and online surveys.
The PG tool will be adapted to fully integrate the selected indicators. The updated tool will then be tested on the IFNS network of study sites. The assessment results will be discussed with the farmers involved and feedback on the tool will be obtained from the farmers who were assessed and also from the advisors carrying out the assessments.
Based on the results and feedback from the assessments, the updated tool will be developed into a Decision Support Tool (DST) for farmers and land managers. Training in the use of the tool will be provided through workshops in each of the partner countries. After gathering feedbacks on the tool’s efficacy and user friendliness, the final version of DSS will be published online.