The “Living landscape” programme Baztan

General view across the central valley of Baztan (Navarre, Spain), with the Church of the Assumption in Amaiur village in the foreground

Baztan valley (Navarre, Spain) is part of the Basque Country, situated in the western parts of the Pyrenees. This rural landscape that we know and feel today is the results of centuries of traditional agricultural management. This landscape goes beyond aesthetic values, and in addition to providing food and ecosystem services, it also unites people as a community. To ensure the survival of its natural and cultural heritage, European Landscape Foundation and partners from Baztan work actively together to maintain and preserve the cultural landscape of Baztan, taking human (social, historical, cultural and economic perspective) and ecological and natural aspects into account.

The partners in the PAISAIA ARRAS BIZIA (“Living landscape”) programme incorporate and promote initiatives that make a living landscape possible and allow it to be managed in a sustainable way.

A number of ongoing initiatives for farmers, associations, private actors and the municipality are combined. The programme supports farmers and shepherds who are committed to the environment and local needs, while at the same time it provides farmers with means to convert to more responsible types of production. Management models of the rural area of the valley will be integrated with its socio-economic and cultural reality. Food consumed in the valley will be locally produced, ensuring at the same time the conservation of the natural heritage and cultural landscape of the valley. This way, the food produced by Baztan farmers becomes more than just a “commercial product” but a product that is firmly rooted in the original land.

Ultimately, the aim of the PAISAIA ARRAS BIZIA programme will be to move agriculture and livestock breeding from being a “primary sector” to a “priority sector”.

Our partners in this programme