New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'
Random header image... Refresh for more!

Why are so many young Greeks turning to farming?

A worker spreads olive harvest netting at an olive grove at Plomari village in Lesbos, Greece.

Eight years into an economic crisis, a shortage of jobs is leading many young Greeks to turn to the land.

By Nikolia Apostolou
May 22, 2017


Lesbos, Greece – Odysseas Elytis, the Greek Nobel laureate and poet, once wrote: “If you disintegrate Greece, in the end you’ll see that what you have left is an olive tree, a vineyard, and a ship. Which means: with these you can rebuild it.”

Having endured eight years of a deepening economic crisis, thousands of young Greeks are taking heed of Elytis’ words by leaving the cities to work on the land.

One of them is 35-year-old Alexandros Kleitsas­, who until four years ago had spent his entire life in Athens, the capital of Greece, working for a private company that certified organic products.

After spending two years being unemployed, Alexandros decided he had no other option but to leave everything behind and move to his grandparents’ village in Kalabaka, four hours’ drive north of Athens. There he started a farm with his brother and three friends.

“Someone has to start producing again in this country,” Alexandros says. “We can’t all be in the service sector and so I left the city. I started from zero, without any land or experience.”

Read the complete article here.