Organic farming flourishes despite government apathy

Government agencies have hardly made any effort to promote the concept of organic farming in Gujarat and yet the state boasts of a few organic farming schemes and involvement of at least 30 farmers in the process.

Written by Express News Service | Vadodara | Published: January 19, 2009 1:21 am

State boasts of a few schemes under which farmers use herbal fertilisers on nearly 3,000 acres of land under cultivation

Government agencies have hardly made any effort to promote the concept of organic farming in Gujarat and yet the state boasts of a few organic farming schemes and involvement of at least 30 farmers in the process.

In organic farming,crops are grown without the use of any pesticides or genetically modified seeds.

“The organic farming in the state is being carried out on 2,000 to 3,000 acres of land where farmers use vermin-compost as fertiliser and herbal pesticides to enrich the soil,” said Kapil Shah,a member of ‘Jatan’ a non-profit organisation working for the past 25 years to promote organic farming.

Shah said different varieties of crops are raised on this land depending on the condition of the soil.

“Though 30 farmers from middle to high income groups are involved in the work,we are trying to promote the concept of organic farming all around the state by giving incentives to small farmers,” said Shah.

On Sunday,at a conference organised by ‘Jatan’ and ‘Vikas Goshthi’ – another organisation involved in promoting the concept – Shah along with Dr G V Ramanjaneyulu,the director of the Hyderabad-based ‘Centre for sustainable agriculture’ discussed the biological fallouts of using genetically modified (GM) crops on human bodies.

Shah said: “When a new gene is introduced for genetic modification,antibiotic bacteria are also pumped along with it to enable the crop attain the desired genetic character. When these seeds enter the human regime,they end up destroying the humans’ immunity leading to eruption of several diseases.”

Interestingly,Shah said,the farmers in various parts of India including Bhavnagar and Bharuch have started using GM crops for a better yield and disease-resistant capacity. “There are several farmers who without the permission of the agricultural department have been using the glycogen seeds,” said Shah.

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