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Guidelines for Authors


Thank you for considering Librello as a venue to publish your work. Please note that Librello is an association, and we only accept submissions from our members. If you are not a member yet, please take a look at the Membership page in the Menu bar. Please read carefully the instructions below to prepare your manuscript accordingly or download our guidelines as PDF.

  • Electronic format. All manuscripts must be submitted in the format .odt or .doc. or .docx, 12pt Times New Roman, left aligned and with double-line spacing. Continuous line numbers and page numbers must be used throughout the text to facilitate the peer review process. Please do not use picture boxes in text to create special characters.
  • The journal publishes the following types of articles: Research Article, Country Update, Review, Mini-Review, Debate, Comment, Response. See below for further details.
  • The first page of all articles must contain (1) the tentative title, (2) the list of authors (corresponding author must be identified) with (3) their full affiliation (institution and postal address) and (4) telephone, fax numbers and e-mail address for the corresponding author.
  • The Title should describe the contents of the manuscript in a precise and concise way. It should be written in title case, i.e., all words should be capitalized, with the exception of prepositions, conjunctions and articles.
  • The Abstract should not exceed 300 words. It should introduce the study, explain briefly the techniques and summarize the most important findings and conclusions. Below the Abstract, the authors should list 4-10 Keywords in alphabetical order. Additional abstracts in a language other than English are welcome and may be published alongside the English Abstract.
  • Citations in the text should be given as numbers in square brackets, and the numbers must be ordered by the appearance in the text. The list of References must appear at the end of the manuscript, and the references must be formatted according to our style. For your convenience, you can download our style using the following hyperlinks for End Note or Zotero and Mendeley. Footnotes are not accepted, notes must be cited in the text following the same rule as for references, and the notes must appear among the list of references. See below for further details.
  • Figures and tables must be inserted in the manuscript after their first mention in the text. The captions of the Figures and headings of tables should be concise, while providing enough information for the reader. Please provide us with Figures in high resolution, suitable for printing in their actual size. See below for further details.
Further guidelines refer to the description of organic farming systems and experiments; the use of scientific names and units, statistical analysis, language, and supporting electronic information.


Types of manuscripts

  • Research Article: These original articles have no restriction in length but will usually be up to about 8,000 words. The usual structure of a manuscript is according to the following  headings: 1. Introduction, 2. Material and Methods, 3. Results, 4. Discussion, 5. Conclusions, Acknowledgements, References.
  • Country Update: This type of paper describes and evaluates the situation of organic farming in a country or state; it should (1) report recent figures on the development of organic agriculture and food systems in a specific country or state; (2) discuss developments in national legislation and regulations; (3) highlight ongoing research activities and organic research funding; and (4) give recommendations for future research, policies, and development.
  • Review: These articles are full length reviews of about 9,000-12,000 words. Reviews on important topics can include the traditional literature review, or more quantitative meta-analyses and syntheses. They should (1) be of broad interest to readers of Organic Farming, (2) highlight novel ideas and principles emerging over the past years, and (3) include a critical evaluation of research as well as prospects for future research directions. Authors considering the submission of a review paper are recommended to check guidelines recently published for writing reviews [1]. Reviews should be structured into numbered sections (e.g. 1. Introduction, …) and subsections (2.1., 2.2., etc.), but should avoid more than two levels of headings.
  • Mini-Review: This type is a shorter review, of 5,000-7,000 words on a topic of high importance but less broad than what could be covered in a full Review.
  • Debate: Debates consist of at least two opposing opinions on a highly topical issue which are published together. Each contribution should be a lightly referenced paper up to about 2,000 words. If you consider contributing to a Debate section please contact the Editor-in-Chief or one of the associate editors, proposing the topic and the opponents.
  • Ideas and Perspectives: Organic Farming publishes essays articulating new ideas, emerging frameworks, and novel concepts and perspectives that are likely to appeal to a wide audience. Papers mainly reviewing a topic, statements of opinion, or papers mainly discussing the author's own work will not be considered in this category.
  • Comment / Response: Comments are published as a direct commentary on a particular original research article or review article published over the previous 6 months in Organic Farming. Comments should usually be up to 2000 words, and must be referenced; authors will be invited to respond to the Comment; both Comment and Response will be published together; both will usually be sent out for peer review before publication.
  • Special issues. If you plan to submit a collection of papers on a specific topic please contact the Editor-in-Chief with a short proposal containing the background of the topic as well as a complete list of all papers to be included. Please indicate whether the contributions are papers presented at a conference.

[1] Pautasso M. Ten Simple Rules for Writing a Literature Review. PLoS Computational Biology.2013;9(7)e1003149. doi:10.1371/journal.pcbi.1003149.


Citations and References

Citations in the text should be done as numbers in square brackets, and the numbers must be ordered by the appearance in the text. The list of References must appear at the end of the manuscript, and the references must be formatted according to our style. For your convenience, you can download our style using the following hyperlinks for End Note or Zotero and Mendeley. Footnotes are not allowed, notes must be cited in the text following the same rule as for references, and the notes must appear among the list of references.

Examples of bibliography

1. Author1 AB, Author2 AB. Title of the article. Journal Name. 2000;1(1):1-20.

1. Author1 AB, Author2 AB. Title of the book. 3 ed. City, Country: Publisher; 2000.

Book Section/Chapter
1. Author1 AB, Author2 AB. Title of the section/chapter. In: Editor1 AB, Editor2 AB, editors. Title of the Book. 3 ed. City, Country: Publisher; 2000. p. 1-20.
Proceedings of Conference
1. Author1 AB, Author2 AB Title of the contribution. In: Editor1 AB, Editor2 AB (eds) Name of the Conference, City, Country, 2000. Publisher, pp 1-20.

1. Author1 AB, Author2 AB. Title of the website.   (Accessed on 20 August 2000); Available from:



Figures help to make research more visible and accessible [2]. They help present detailed results and complex relationships, patterns, and trends clearly and concisely, reduce manuscript length and improve readers’ understanding of the methods and results. Use figures to highlight trends, relationships and patterns within and between data sets in case the general pattern is more important than the exact values.

Ensure that all parts of figures are clearly legible and sufficiently labeled. The figure caption should not only be used to explain abbreviations and symbols but also serves to highlight the key message of the figure.

Acceptable electronic figure formats are .tiff, .pdf, .eps and .gif; Figures should be provided in a high resolution so as to reproduce well in print and online. Files from which original figures were produced should be submitted together with the manuscript.

Authors are encouraged to use colour figures and photographs where appropriate, i.e. where the colour helps to better convey the contents of the figure. However, authors should ensure that readers are still able to extract the relevant information easily when the figure is printed in black-and-white. Also, in simple bar graphs, scatterplots and similar graphs, unnecessary use of colour should be avoided.

The use of gridlines and frames in graphs should be avoided. When creating figures please use a white background, not a transparent background, as figures with transparent background may not display well online. Lines in graphs should be at least 0.5 point and no more than 1.5 point in order to reproduce well in a pdf. Text within figures (e.g. axis titles) must be in Arial font and must be large enough to be still legible when the figure is reduced to about half its original size. Symbols preferred are ○, ●, □, ▪, while + and × should be avoided.

Image files must not be manipulated or adjusted in any way that could lead to misinterpretation of the information present in the original image.

When describing results from figures, avoid statements such as "Results are shown in Figure 2". Instead, write for example, "Biodiversity declined with the addition of nitrogen (Figure 2)". Also, be specific where possible: e.g., "positively correlated" instead of "correlated".

[2] Tartanus M, Wnuk A, Kozak M, Hartley J. Graphs and prestige in agricultural journals. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology. 2013;64(9)1946-1950. doi: 10.1002/asi.22868.



Use tables to show many and precise numerical values and other specific data. Tables, however small, should be numbered and referred to in the text by their numbers. Table captions should be brief, with any descriptions of detail given directly beneath the table, in parentheses. Column headings should usually be in lower-case type, and the units of measurement and any numerical factors should be placed at the head of each column. Units should be contained within parentheses, e.g. "yield (dt ha-1)".


Description of organic farming systems and experiments

Organic farming systems are diverse, complex and dynamic. Therefore, this journal places particular emphasis on a thorough, comprehensive and exact description of the research methods. The Material and Methods section should contain the following information regarding the field trials:

  • Soil type and other fundamental soil properties such as soil pH, organic C content, and soil texture.
  • Information on climate with tables or figures typically reporting monthly averages of air temperature and precipitation over the experimental period, as well as long term averages;
  • Full rotation as well as pre-crops of the previous two years;
  • Information on management including plant protection measures (products, amounts, dates), fertilization (type or product, amounts, nutrient contents, dates), irrigation (amounts, dates);
  • Year of conversion of the experimental field or farm;
  • Landscape features such as hedges or trees that may have interfered with field trials. A digital map of the trial should be included with the submission.

Please provide names and locations (town, state, country) of all equipment and machinery suppliers.


Scientific names of organisms and SI units

All organisms must be named with the scientific names (Latin binomial) according to current nomenclature; Genus and species names should be in italics. Authorities for the Latin binomial of every organism must be given, but are not used in the title or summary, and only on the first mention in the main body of the text. Gene names and loci should be italic. Virus nomenclature (and acronyms) should follow the guidelines of the International Committee on the Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV).

Symbols, units and abbreviations should be expressed as Système Internationale (SI) units. If the paper contains many symbols, they should be defined as early in the text as possible, or within the Materials and Methods section. Time units are: s, min, h, days, weeks, months, years. Please use 'L' for litre not 'l' to avoid confusion with 'one'. Use the negative index for units, e.g. t ha-1 (not t/ha) or g m-2 (not g/m2).


Statistical Analysis

Experimental designs as well as methods of statistical analysis should be explained clearly and comprehensively in the Material and Methods section. It is recommended that statistical procedures be checked by a statistician prior to submission of the manuscript. The choice of particular statistical tests (e.g. comparisons of means) and procedures should be justified and referenced accordingly. Measures of central tendency (mean, median, mode) must be accompanied by measures of variability (standard deviation or standard error, range). The use of General Linear Models is preferred over data transformation (see [3] for details). Probability values should be denoted as p. Refer to magnitudes of effects (e.g. give effect sizes and confidence intervals) rather than just p-values.

[3] Crawley M. The R Book. 2 ed. Wiley, Oxford, UK; 2013.



Manuscripts must be written in English. They should be clear, concise and grammatically correct. Spelling should conform to the Concise Oxford Dictionary.

Authors whose first language is not English are strongly advised to have their manuscript checked by an English native speaker prior to submission. Manuscripts with serious deficiencies in English may be returned without review.


Supporting Information

Data which is too extensive for inclusion in article may be presented electronically as supporting information. As such, it will be reviewed as part of the paper. The availability of the supporting information should be indicated in the main manuscript by a paragraph, to appear after the references.


Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

  1. The first or corresponding author agrees to engage the membership program or to support the publication of the article by a post-acceptance publication fee.
  2. This article was not published neither is being considered for publication anywhere else and all authors agree with this present submission.
  3. The authors agree that the manuscript will be published under a Creative Commons Attribution License (
  4. The text was prepared according to the guidelines for authors, the Figures and Tables appear after their first mention in the text, and a zip-file containing all figures in high resolution was prepared and will be submitted as supplementary files.
  5. The literature used was cited in the text using numbers in square brackets, and the list of references was prepared according to the Vancouver style.

Copyright Notice

Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:

  1. Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.

  2. Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.

  3. Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).


Privacy Statement

The names and email addresses entered in this journal site will be used exclusively for the stated purposes of this journal and will not be made available for any other purpose or to any other party.


Author Fees

This journal charges the following author fees.

Post-Acceptance Publication: 350.00 (EUR)
If this paper is accepted for publication, you will be asked to pay an Article Publication Fee to cover publications costs.
If the author has purchased an annual membership or is affiliated to an institution with institutional-membership, this fee does not apply.

If you do not have funds to pay such fees, you will have an opportunity to waive each fee. We do not want fees to prevent the publication of worthy work.

ISSN: 2297-6485
2012 - 2024 Librello, Switzerland.