Sri Lanka faces a food crisis – No, it’s not due to organic farming

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Opponents argue that organic farming cannot be practiced on a large scale. However, India has a definitive example of how chemical-free farming has been rolled out to 1,38,000 farmers in 13 districts of Andhra Pradesh, bringing almost 1,50,000 acres of farmland under the model. of agriculture ZBNF. Popularly called “zero-budget natural farming,” it was introduced with a time scale in mind as a grassroots agrarian movement. Farmers have been trained in this low-cost, locally sourced natural farming method, which does not rely on the use of agrochemicals and has the potential to achieve the twin goals of global food security and preservation of the environment.

Farmers were trained to be self-sufficient in developing local seed treatments such as bijamritapreparation of a microbial inoculum (jiwamrita) and techniques such as cover crops with mulching (achhadana) to improve soil fertility and control pests.

So while the intentions of the Rajapaksa government may have been noble in seeking to introduce organic farming, what has not been well managed is the transition to this method. An overnight statement of intent without the necessary groundwork in place led to hoarding, black market and panic among farmers.

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