Joost van Strien, the owner of the biodynamic farm Zonnegoed in Ens (Netherlands), has more than 20 years of experience in growing organically. The farm is located on the beautiful sandy soil on former sea ground in the Noordoostpolder in Flevoland. Since 1997 Joost has worked on making the soil increasingly fertile by using a technique that prevents driving on the cultivated areas with heavy machinery. He does not plow nor does he use slurry. In fact, since 2020 the use of animal manure has been totally abandoned. On an area of 90 ha Joost grows potatoes, pumpkins, parsnips, carrots, beetroot, peas, green beans, sweetcorn and cut fertilizers, a mixture of luzerne, clover, grass and herbs. This mixture helps to produce the necessary nitrogen supply for the soil; additional nutrients are obtained by composting organic matter from a nearby nature reserve. In this way the nutrient cycle is basically closed within the operation which makes it virtually independent from any external input.
Zonnegoed became certified in April 2021 and is the first biocyclic vegan operation in the Netherlands.