At the age of 30, Andreas Gschleier is one of the many young farmers in South Tyrol/Südtirol. A resident of Ora/Auer, he’s not a conventional farmer; his apples are produced organically.
Andreas Gschleier grew up among apple trees. Taking over his father’s farm was jumping into the deep end. Nevertheless, he still benefits today from the experience he garnered as a young boy working in the apple orchards. Apple cultivation according to organic guidelines is the Gschleier family’s creed.
His eyes gleam when Andreas Gschleier is telling about his work. A good relationship to the environment as well as understanding of and respect for nature is especially important to him. That’s why he drives a tractor with special tires that are gentle on the orchard’s soil. He does without hail nets in order to leave the raptors their natural hunting grounds.
During the year, he carries out his work on his 4 hectares of farmland by himself. Only at harvest, he picks alongside a Romanian family. “When I am working in the orchard, I am in harmony with myself, I’m almost meditating,” beams the young man from under his tousled hair.
He enjoys being able to look into the blue sky while working, with the sound of birds twittering in his ears. “The most important knowledge I have won from my work as an organic farmer is the fact that humans cannot control everything,” the young farmer explains.