Regenerative Agriculture in Catalonia




Regenerative agriculture restores soil properties, captures carbon, and produces high-quality food

At IRTA, we are researching regenerative agriculture because we believe in a sustainable agricultural model that reduces greenhouse gas emissions, regenerates both field biodiversity and soil properties, and is economically viable for the sector.


We are investigating the techniques that define the principles of regenerative agriculture:


Avoiding field tillage
Reducing soil tillage promotes carbon sequestration, protects the soil from erosion, and increases biodiversity.


Maintaining permanent cover crops
Soil cover with plants improves water and nutrient retention, increases biodiversity, and protects against erosion.


Promoting field biodiversity
Crop diversification, cover crops, and creating habitats for pollinators and natural enemies enhance biodiversity.


Incorporating cattle
Integrating livestock through rotational grazing enriches the soil with organic matter and optimizes nutrient cycles in agricultural ecosystems.


Optimizing crop residue management
Crop residues, such as pruning remains or stubble, are used to add organic matter to the soil, improve its fertility, and retain moisture for longer. This practice also promotes carbon sequestration and improves soil structure.

“Regenerative agriculture offers the opportunity to ensure the production of quality food for present and future generations.”
🗣️ Dra. Georgina Alins



AgriRegenCat and AgriCarboniCat Projects

We are developing the Regenerative Agriculture (AgriRegenCat) and Carbon Agriculture in Catalonia (AgriCarboniCat) projects, funded by the Generalitat of Catalonia to improve crop resilience to climate change.

Our goals are:


1️⃣ To research and identify the best techniques of regenerative and carbon agriculture to expand knowledge in this research field.

2️⃣ To transfer scientific knowledge to the technical sector so that the most productive and sustainable regenerative agricultural practices can be applied economically and environmentally.   

3️⃣ To inform the public about regenerative agriculture, highlighting the benefits of consuming sustainable foods.  


Through researching regenerative agricultural practices, we aim to lead the transition towards a more sustainable agricultural future, providing practical and economically viable solutions.

What do we research?





We characterize the soil microbiome, soil and aerial invertebrates (pollinators and natural pest enemies), and floral diversity.

Soil quality and health


We analyze soil structure and quality, including organic matter and nutrient content, water retention capacity, carbon stock, and carbon sequestration potential.

Greenhouse gas emissions


We quantify greenhouse gas emissions to identify agricultural practices that optimize carbon balance; minimizing emissions and maximizing carbon sequestration.

Life cycle analysis


We calculate the effectiveness of different agricultural practices in reducing environmental impact, promoting sustainability, and balancing carbon footprint.



We monitor field production to evaluate the profitability of regenerative and carbon-sequestering agricultural practices.

“Sequestering carbon in the soil reduces the excessive concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and contributes to climate change mitigation by the agricultural sector.”
🗣️ Dra. Martínez Eixarch

Where do we research?

We have a network of demonstration and experimental fields in regenerative and carbon agriculture throughout Catalonia. Here, we investigate the best practices in the most representative crops of the region: extensive crops 🚜, rice 🌾, apple 🍎, vine 🍇, and horticulture 🥬. 

Distribution of experimental fields and demonstration farms:


The main experiments and research activities we conduct at these locations are:

Our team

At IRTA, we coordinate the projects with the participation of CREAF and the University of Lleida (UdL).



More than 30 people are involved in the projects across Catalonia:



The project coordinators are the IRTA researchers:


Dra. Georgina Alins
IRTA researcher and coordinator of the AgriRegenCat project


Dra. Maite Martinez Eixarch
IRTA researcher and coordinator of the AgriCarboniCat project



Contact Us!


For more information, collaborations, or other inquiries, you can contact us via the project manager’s email: