Chemical Free Food
Agriculture in India is in deep crisis today. Chemical heavy agriculture is harmful to the health of farmers, consumers and the ecology and is economically unviable for small farmers.
AID works with small and marginal farmers as well as landless families across India on
- Strengthening skills and knowledge base on sustainable agriculture
- Control of seeds by farming communities
- Making farming a remunerative livelihood
SUSTAINABLE FARMING IN SUNDERBANS, WEST BENGAL
Starting with 25 farmers in 2009 after Cyclone Aila had devastated agriculture in the area, today 20,000 farmers have taken up sustainable agriculture and are connected to markets in Kolkata to get a better price.
– Farmers become trainers and train others
– Vermicompost is a very popular bio-input
– A small group performs street theaters to raise awareness about the ill effects of chemical agriculture
– Over 11 outlets in Kolkata have been started to support bringing organic vegetables to market to support a fair price for the farmers.
SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE IN VIDARBHA, MAHARASTRA
Chetana Vikas recognizes that the cyclical nature of rain and crop diseases have been exacerbated by over-reliance on expensive genetically modified seeds and fertilizers, single crop agriculture and the lack of bargaining power of farmers. Chetana Vikas works in developing, testing and supporting farmers in scientific and sustainable agriculture techniques so farmers can rely on their land for financial and nutritional sustenance.
– Beej Swaraj – seed bank sourced from Alternative Agriculture Resource Center
– Promotes farming for self-reliance, multi-culture of cash & food crops
– Using techniques of soil and water conservation
– Innovative solar fences to protect crops from wild animals
– Building capacity of farmers in finance and local market formation
– 320 Kg of seeds procured by farmers
– 150 farmers have taken up sustainable methods on 343 acres in 27 villages; 23% of the farmers are women
– Training & workshops attended by nationwide organizations & activists
SAVING & CONTROLLING SEEDS
Farmers and landless families save seeds and exchange it amongst themselves. Service Center facilitates the process and documents the varieties of seeds and their characteristics. This ensures food security of the community and preserves bio-diversity.
– Working & training 1000 seed savers in 5 districts
– Over 500 indigenous varieties of vegetables documented