Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Strategies for the promotion of organic agriculture in developing countries

Written by Azeem Tariq
Organic agriculture provides developing countries a broad variety of economic, cultural, social and environmental benefits. The scientific studies in Asia, Africa and Latin America specify that organic farmers usually have more earning as compare to conventional counterparts. New developments in the organic technologies have the possibilities of sustaining the yield for long period of time, although improving the biodiversity, soil fertility and other ecosystem services. Exceptionally, organic agriculture is well suited to the smallholder farmers because it makes poor farmers less dependent of expensive external inputs and provides them the higher and stable income, which improves the food security. Furthermore, organic agriculture in developing countries keeps alive the farmers traditional practices and crop varieties.  
Less use of chemical substances in organic agriculture prevent the risk of ground and surface water contamination by nutrient leaching for instant, 57% of nitrate leaching lower by organic agriculture compared to the conventional practices. Organic farming also have the potential to reduce the climate change effects, scientific findings have prove that organic farming use 20 to 56 % less energy in per unit dry matter production of crop as compare to conventional agriculture. Furthermore, organic farms can sequester 3 to 8 tons more carbon per hectare that illustrates the potential of organic agriculture to meet the Kyoto target of countries to reduce the CO2 emission. These findings clearly stated that organic farming favorable trade for sustainable development, poverty reduction and healthy environment in the developing countries.
For successful execution of organic farming in developing countries there is the need of intrusion in the strategies related to; promotion of organic research; development of systems of standard; provide support for development of local, regional, national and international market for organic products; the dependence and sustainable use of natural resources; enhance the knowledge and skills of poor farmers through education and training workshops; improvement in value addition by developing post harvest handling technologies, storage and preservation techniques; and participation of the special interest groups such as women, youth and vulnerable. 

Thus, to promote the organic agriculture in developing countries there is need to set policies and incentives for smallholder farmers to keep on farming depending on natural resource utilization and lower the dependence on external inputs. 

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