World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Selective Sowing Can Reduce Erosion in Africa - UN

Farming By Disturbing Soil As Little As Possible Holds Promise For Africa, UN Says

Farming by sowing seeds into covered, little disturbed soil can reverse land degradation and reduce labour and fuel needs, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) said as the Third World Congress on Conservation Agriculture opened today in Kenya.

"With conservation agriculture, farmers can produce more food on a sustainable basis, they spend less time and labour on land preparation, fuel consumption for machinery is lower and there is a reduced need for chemicals," an FAO Director, Shivaji Pandey, said. "The concept contributes directly to the fight against hunger and poverty."

The soil is kept covered by crop residues or a special crop, protecting the soil from erosion, conserving moisture, adding organic matter, fixing nitrogen and suppressing weeds. Instead of labour-intensive ploughing, farmers plant their seeds directly into the soil, using simple hoes, inexpensive jab-planters, or animal-drawn direct seeders, FAO said.

In Zambia over 200,000 farmers are practicing conservation agriculture. During the country’s 2000-2001 drought, farmers who used conservation agriculture managed to harvest a crop, while those who used mechanical tillage faced total crop failure, according to FAO. In Ghana, too, more than 350,000 farmers use the practice.

The method is spreading in Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Eritrea, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Mali, Mozambique, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania and Uganda, where some farmers have doubled or even tripled their grain yields, the Rome-based agency said.

For families living with HIV/AIDS, conservation agriculture offers a way to produce a diversified diet using less labour, it said.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>

ALSO:

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news