31 Members of the IAP Desert Club Helmy Abouleish Sekem Tobias Bandel Soil More Sanjay Bansal Ambootia Rembert Biemond Poppe Bram Do It Volkert Engelsman Eosta Nikolai Fuchs GLS Treuhand Thomas Harttung Aarstiderne Stefan Hipp Hipp Patrick Holden Sustainable Food Trust Sebastiaan Huisman John Lister Shipton Mill Götz Rehn Alnatura Roland Schaette Schaette Stiftung Peter Segger Blaencamel Farm Tai Seng Yee Ulrich Walter Lebensbaum Willem van Wijk Joseph Wilhelm Rapunzel The Desert Club active questioning active response In the early 1990s something momentous occurred in the Egyp tian desert Several international organic pioneers met unex pectedly All of them were somehow associated with the SE KEM farm including Ulrich Walter who was already purchasing herbs and spices there They started talking and asking ques tions and soon founded a club It s been known as the Desert Club ever since although its official name is the Internation al Association for Partnership in Ecology and Trade IAP for short Its members discuss issues such as How can the rap idly growing human population be fed How should the econo my be structured to serve people How can humankind be wise stewards of the earth preserving and even improving rath er than continuing to destroy it All of the founding members are organic pioneers which helped them forge a connection Since they live and work scattered across the globe they have a lot to tell one another The meetings which are held sever al times a year should not be pictured as some sort of alumni meeting where people reminisce about the good old days In stead the Desert Club enjoys lectures by illustrious guests such as American physicist Arthur Zajac a maverick who enjoys dis cussing science and meditation with the Dalai Lama Or Irene van Lippe Biesterfield sister of Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands a non conformist princess single mother and activist for wom en s rights and nature conservation The Food Quality and Health Association FQH should not go unmentioned here a research initiative launched by the Desert Club that explores the relationship between food and health To day several scientific institutions are involved in FQH At its meetings over the past decades the club has also worked to formulate its understanding of sustainability The members concluded that the usual three pillar model of environmental economic and social sustainability was missing something and added a fourth pillar culture A sort of meta level to connect the dots between these usual areas of activity and infuse them with meaning creating a deep awareness of how they relate to all of us in our everyday lives Such an awareness transforms sustaina ble practices from necessary obligations to fulfilling actions This is why the entrepreneurs of the Desert Club see the need to fos ter a culture that empowers employees and human beings to act in accordance with this deeper meaning and to help shape it

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