Chemical free Natural Farming - an eye opener
(Organizer weekly has published this article on 20.03.2023)
The Union Budget 2022-23 has announced chemical free Natural farming across the county with the initial focus on five kilometer wide farm land corridors along the river Ganga. In fact, the soil in the five kilometer wide corridors along the river Ganga is rich with natural nutrients which automatically create a food bowl for the entire country. Promoting natural farming in this golden corridor of the river Ganga will be a positive step which will encourage the farmers across the country to take up chemical free natural farming.
In the years to come the global demand for food will increase phenomenally. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization Report, as many as 828 million people in the world were affected by hunger in 2021. The United Nation in its survey finds that one in three people globally do not have access to adequate food and over 2.3 billion people — 30% of the world’s population — lack year-round access to food. The Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2 — zero hunger by 2030 — will be missed by a huge margin of 660 million people, the UN has estimated.
The propagation of mono crop farming, use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides has aggravated the hunger situation across the world though it had increased the food production for a short period. Big farmers in the West and European countries are giving up farming in spite of huge government subsidies. The number farmers’ suicide in Europe is increasing. Excessive use of chemical fertilizer and pesticides has adversely affected the soil quality and reduced disease resistance capacity of the crops. Vast farm land with a single crop has become prone to pest attack and diseases. The crop diversity once helped farmers survive; when one crop failed the other crop lived to sustain the farmers. The chemical free natural farming will repair the farmland but it will take a little more time.
There is growing health consciousness among the world community for safe chemical free food; as the chemical food related diseases like tomato flu, bird flu, swine flu and melamine contamination etc has worsened the fear among people. With rich crop diversity, farming skill and the largest number of farmers in the world, India can grow chemical free food to meet the global demand. As per Fortune Business Insights analysis, the global organic foods market is projected to grow from $157.48 billion in 2022 to $366.66 billion by 2029, at a CAGR of 12.83% in the forecast period. Though natural farming today gives far less yield in comparison to chemical farming, the combination of traditional and modern technology will reduce the cost of production and increase the yield of natural and organic food in future. According to the IMARC group analysis, the organic food market size in India reached US $ 1278 million in 2022 and the group expects the market to reach US $ 4602 million by 2028. India has a great opportunity to tap the world’s food market.