Organic farming could break cycle of famine and poverty in Africa
October 22, 2008
Organic farming may offer Africa the best opportunity to break out of the devastating cycle of poverty and malnutrition parts of the continent have faced in recent decades, according to a new report from the United Nations.
As reported by The Independent, the report suggests that organic farming methods can boost yields and incomes for small African farmers.
“The potential contribution of organic farming to feeding the world maybe far higher than many had supposed,” said Achim Steiner, head of the UN’s Environment Programme (UNEP).
Organic agriculture offers the potential for farmers to reduce dependence on costly fertilizers and pesticides, while focusing on crops that are better suited to the local environment.
The new report analyzed 114 projects in 24 African countries and found that yields had more than doubled when organic and near-organic practices had been implemented. In East Africa, the use of traditional farming techniques boosted yield by 128 percent.
Daniel Howden. Organic farming ‘could feed Africa’. The Independent. 22 October 2008