The Ceres Ecotur project is an initiative of Ecoagroturismo Foundation, the representative of International ECEAT (European Centre for Ecological and Agricultural Tourism) in Spain, and aims to unify an ecological tourism network in Spain. The project was born as an initiative aimed at the preservation, conservation and dissemination of rural and ethnographic heritage, and the surrounded environment that provides this project a reason to exist.
Ceres Ecotur project directly and indirectly adds value to agrotourism through its partners. It is understood as an offer of activities that are integrated in agro-livestock farms whose managers offer leisure activities related to the agriculture and livestock traditional world, reinforcing their relationship with tourism. Activities can include gastronomy based on local varieties that promote biodiversity and food sovereignty. The most cultural aspect can lead to deepen into the history of the countryside where it is developed, and to discover the reasons for cultivating certain crops or social processes.
It is based on receiving travellers in their own farms, in active production units, where farmers can show their daily activities and involve visitors in rural life experiences. Tourists are integrated into a context that should work with or without them, in no case they should be created for them. All by involving farmers, local people and rural stakeholders who are aware on improving their socioeconomic environment, promoting the diversification of farming incomes through a model of sustainable tourism in rural areas.
This project arises from the commitment made between the Ecoagrotourism Foundation and ECEAT-International in 2003, according to the conclusions of the International Year of Ecotourism in 2002.
Among these conclusions are to sensitize and guide establishments and tourism companies on sustainability criteria, according to the new demands of friendly consumption of natural resources and local cultures, for a positive action between users and the environment.
As a result, Ceres Ecotur is a certification applied in Spain, which takes as reference the European organic quality system ECEAT, under a sustainability criterion that measures the level of commitment to the environment, socio-cultural and economic with the destination.