Close to farmers:
Close to farmers:
Farming Insider: Rodolfo Cura, Argentina
Family-run farm where three generations work together
Location: Idiazabal, Córdoba Province, Argentina
About the Cura Family
The Cura family are the third generation to work their farm. It was grandfather Luis Pedro who set up the business, but now father Rodolfo and his children Santiago, Maria, and Luciana are responsible for the livestock farm. Daughters Maria and Luciana, both graduates in agricultural science, are waiting in the wings to successfully develop the legacy of the first two generations.
Someday I would like to work with my siblings as a team to further develop what our family has already built.
Rodolfo, when we look around your farm, we see many family members who are passionate about the business. How did you end up working in agriculture?
Rodolfo: Since I was a child, I have always dreamed of devoting myself to our farm and to farming. Once I’d finished school, I followed in my father’s footsteps. Now I hope that my children – I have three daughters and a son – will do the same. My two eldest daughters are already agricultural engineers.
That brings us nicely onto that subject: Luciana and Maria, you are both agriculturalists, taking over the legacy from your father. It sounds like the perfect scenario, but was this a childhood dream for you, as it was for him?
Maria: I always liked our farm, even as a child, but I wasn’t sure if I really wanted to work in agriculture. I was certain, though, that I wanted to work outdoors, in contact with nature.
Luciana: I had the drive early on to support my father one hundred percent. Now, as a qualified agricultural scientist, I am the livestock feed specialist on our farm.
Does working in a family business have a significantly different meaning for you than if you worked in a company with which you had no family connection?
Maria: I have actually worked in two other companies before, one of which is a large multinational. During that time, though, I felt a deep need to be with my family more, even if that came with the challenges of having to divide the roles within the family according to the activities that each person could do. Now, working with my family this way gives me tremendous satisfaction.
Rodolfo: I believe that working in the family business comes with many positive values. The greatest value comes from the chance to share the activities I am so passionate about with my father and my children.
Luciana and Maria, what are the specific advantages for you of working together across generations?
Luciana: My grandfather and father have laid down a great history with the business and we learn a lot from them and from the experiences they’ve had. Working with older generations enables us to ask questions, and we encourage them to ask us questions, too.
Maria: On a family farm, children who are interested in agriculture have the opportunity to work directly with parents and grandparents and learn from them. I very much hope that our family farm can continue in this way over the years, because I believe that we and those who come after us will have to keep reinventing ourselves, as the nature of agricultural production is changing a lot.
Change is a constant companion in agriculture. Looking back, which developments in the agricultural industry have been a major milestone for you?
Rodolfo: In recent years, the work in the fields has changed a lot in general. I think one major change came in 1989/1990, when no-till farming emerged. In this region, in fact, we were kind of pioneers of this activity.
Now we are facing another technological advance in relation to fertilization, namely variable dosage. When we were still working without plows, we carried out general fertilizing, but these days we only fertilize where weeds grow. Who would have thought that one day we would have an intelligent machine that fertilizes where a plant grows?
Maria: For me, the most important progress in all these years is the greater status of women in agriculture. Women are taking on responsibility, they are managing farms, which is all very positive.
Do you have any particular wishes that you would like to fulfill with the farm?
Luciana: Someday I would like to work with my siblings in a team to further develop what our family has already built.
Rodolfo: The farm is everything to me. Working in agriculture is the greatest way to do what I love. For me, the farm means freedom.
Young and old - moving forward together.
Farmers have opened their gates to us to give an insight into their everyday farming life. Their farms all have their own character - which is reflected in the way of life, the philosophy and by the type of farming and livestock breeding. What they have in common: looking towards the future and a desire to pass on their fields and farms to the next generation. Sustainable and productive.