Jadwiga Lopata

Ashoka Fellow
Stryszów 156, Poland
Fellow Since 1996


This profile was prepared when Jadwiga Lopata was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1996.
The New Idea
Jadwiga Lopata recognized that Poland's many small family-owned farms were ideally suited to convert to organic farming methods and thereby benefit from the emerging premium market for organic produce and livestock. In order to be able to make this shift, however, supplemental income was required. Jadwiga's solution was to provide families converting to organic farming with a steady stream of visitors (mostly urban families from Western Europe) who happily pay for the opportunity to stay, eat, and work on the farms. Thus, Jadwiga demonstrates to rural farmers that not only is organic farming viable, but so is their bucolic lifestyle. This tangible material re-valuation of family farming is precisely the antidote required by family farms to enable them to resist the encroachment of large-scale agribusiness.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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