In fighting pests, the Uganda Organic Agriculture Policy stipulates that farmers should use plant combinations technically known as bio-rational to dispel pests and disease causing agents from their crops fields.
The Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries
Minister, Vincent Bamulangaki Ssempijja has encouraged more farmers to embrace
Organic Farming practices in order to improve food safety and gin access to
According to Ssempijja, the newly approved organic
agriculture Policy tasks extension workers to identify and register farmers
interested in organic agriculture for training, certification and assistance.
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Speaking at a dialogue to promote agro
ecological farming in Kampala on Sunday morning, the Minister said the policy
encourages research in various areas of organic enterprises including fisheries
and animal husbandry with the aim of getting Uganda listed among those
producing organic food products.
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The Uganda Organic Agriculture Policy prohibits
the use of synthetic inputs such as drugs, fertilizers and pesticides in
farming. It encourages farmers to utilize manures composted in their farms to
increase plant nutrients in the soil.
In fighting pests, the Uganda Organic
Agriculture Policy stipulates that farmers use plant combinations technically
known as bio-rational to dispel pests and disease causing agents from their
Godfrey Bwogi, an Agricultural Scientist at Uganda
Martyrs University is attempting to promote Organic farming techniques among
small holder banana farmers in the Lake Victoria crescent where the food
feeding more than 70 Million people around the world faces high incidents of
Banana Wilt, Banana Weevils and Nematodes attacks.
Bwogi says the Banana pests and diseases have
significantly reduced the yields in Kyotera, Masaka, Mpigi and Mukono districts
where he is working.
He says lack of adequate supply of animal manure is
worsening the situation and call for urgent introduction of other safe measures
to control the decline in production of the crop with huge cultural value in
Bwogi is working with bananas farmers in the
area to intercrop their bananas with wild plants or other plants known to have
active ingredients, which are harmful to pests and banana diseases.
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The technique of inter cropping plants is
technically known as bio-rational among agricultural scientists. Bwogi says
when integrated with on the farm techniques such as mixing ash with sand,
manure and other animal waste, pests and diseases are kept at bay without
hurting soil organisms necessary for healthy plant growths.
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Currently, there are only 229,000 farmers
accredited to produce organic products in the country.
The farmers are being coordinated by the
National Organic Agricultural Movement of Uganda (NOGAMU). Inorganic chemicals are known for killing
soil organisms which are essential in soil formation and renewing soil
fertility through fixing plant nutrients nitrogen and oxygen as well as water
percolation into the soil.
As farmers kill weed and pests using inorganic
pesticides, the soil organisms are killed along, significantly reducing crop
Bwogi says as the number of consumers demanding organic products
increases around the world in the wake of cancer; government should encourage
researchers to innovate for farmers to increase their productivity.