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Practice safe and sustainable farming – stakeholders

Stakeholders have called upon Zambian famers to engage in multiple crop production systems using local and available natural resources that are environmental friendly.

Bornface Zulu an energy expert said traditional farming methods and reliance on non-renewable sources of energy have led to a negative impact on the environment and sustainable practice.

“The government, private companies, Non Governmental Organizations and farmers can work together to take steps towards eco-friendly agriculture,” Mr. Zulu said.

He added that government can provide incentives and support for the development and use of renewable energy as well as promoting sustainable farming practices.

Mr. Zulu said farmers need to be trained about organic farming techniques including composting, crop rotation and intercropping which are environmental friendly.

“They can also benefit from learning how to plant trees for bio energy and how to use sustainable sources such as biogas, wind and solar power,” Mr. Zulu said.

Meanwhile, Small Scale Farmers’ Development Agency (SAFADA) Executive Director Mr. Boyd Moobwe said  the organization is trying to engage farmers into holistic and ecological farming where they will be using local and available natural resources.

Mr. Moobwe said famers need to slowly start moving away from only relying on chemical fertilizer such as Urea and some pesticides that are toxic to the environment as well as consumers of the farming products.

“We currently have a program running in Southern Province involving the use of bio gas by farmers and we would like most farmers to adopt it because it is environmental friendly,” he said.

The Executive Director added that one of the goals of sustainable development is making sure that the environment is preserved and protected which starts by reducing the use of chemicals on the land and stopping the cutting down of trees for commercial farming.

“Climate change is one of the results of poor farming practices because there is no proper management of our natural resources,” Mr. Moobwe said.

He has since called upon government and farmers to advocate and promote the use of environmental friendly farming practices and diversify the agriculture sector.

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