TODAY -

Organic Wave & Challenges in Manipur

Jajo Themson *

  Organic turmeric of MOMA with farmers at Kakching in January 11 2021
Organic turmeric of MOMA with farmers at Kakching in January 11 2021 :: Pix - TSE



Introduction

There are situations when development programs confront to human race as rival in-stead of favourable to men. As everyone acquainted, the earth planet comes to face severe jolts of unexpected experiences such as global warming, unknown diseases, uneven rain pattern leading to crop failure and famine, increased natural disasters like flood, draught, land slide, cyclone, earth quakes etc. as fall out of climate change due to dimensional distraught caused to natural environment.

In all the possible means the world ever attempt to mitigate climate issues, returning to nature is the best suitable solutions. Agriculture is one of the most effective answers. Thus, as far as agriculture is concerned, it is compulsive to go for sustainable agriculture- the one which endures cultivation and crop productions to meet the present requirements of human as well as environment and continues to serve the future needs.

Organic farming

Organic farming is a key component to sustainable agriculture which was developed against the un-sustainability appeared in the conventional agricultural practice under Green Revolutions.

In Organic farming attempts are made to find the objectives of good balance between the need for food production and preservation of ecosystem within the environment. Wake of Bio-matters in farms substantiate sustainable farming, such as agri-horticulture, agri-forestry, multiple cropping, integrated farming, livestock development, crops rotation, perma-culture etc.

Organic farming is an extreme opposite to current world practice of agriculture. It is a direct action back to land and nature which is a response to the environmental sufferings caused. Its purpose is also to repair, maintain and improve the ecological balance.

It has so many advantages like it is human & Environment-friendly, it produces Healthy & tasty food, inexpensive process, Organic inputs, Generate income, income through exports and source of employment. It also plays a crucial role in carbon sequestration, water retaining good environmentally and comparatively plants and crops of organic farm is much higher in climate resilience.

Prospects

Organic products are at high demand everywhere in the present world. There have been so many instances in India as people becomes health conscious today as such organic products like vegetables, food crops and horticulture crops are increasingly demanded for every household consumption. Tourists from outside Manipur and foreigners mostly demanded organic foods today. These demands are very common in star hotels.

Comparatively, organic vegetables and other products are much higher prices than inorganic chemical products in European countries. Therefore, farmers in the state are highly encouraged to go for organic farming which has big prospect of market. Even less quantity of production can be a good earning. Besides this, like mentioned above, it is beneficial for both human and environment underlining the most feasible and sustainable agriculture.

Initiatives

People today feel, heard and talked much about organic life realizing the negative human health impacts and soil health as well as environmental impacts created by chemical elements in agriculture. However, only few people seem to actually take action steps towards organic. State Govt. has initiated an organic mission called Mission of Organic Manipur Agency (MOMA).

Besides this, there are some NGO organisations which work on objectives of achieving organic revolution. The Initiative for Sustainable Agriculture (ISA) organisation based in Kamjong district is also one which strives to achieve sustainable agriculture based on the organic foundation. Even today the wave of organic farming is still at low tide.

Challenges

One most serious factor of slow wave of organic in Manipur is shortage of alternative fertilizers. So far there are no profuse and regular production and supply of bio-fertilizers like vermi compost and Bokashi. Even if state Govt takes steps to achieve 100% organic and end chemical fertilizers and pesticides, question of availability of alternative fertilizers is still a big challenge.

Another challenges in the progress of organic farming is limited fertile and arable land. Being major portion of land in Manipur are hilly and valley regions are mostly meant only for wet paddy, flourish of wide organic farming is a big issue in the state.

Still, lack of perennial irrigation water supply is another serious problem towards intensive and extensive organic farming in the state. Even though spaces are there, so many locations remained non-cultivable due to shortage of water. It may be due to lack of irrigation and canal facility.

Moreover, there are big challenges of application of bio-fertilizers in the wet paddy field. Even though a cultivator wants to launch bio-fertilizers input against chemicals, if immediate neighbours do not apply the same, the one who desires to apply the organic one happens to be useless. Therefore, until and unless, all community farmers equality aware of and take risk to change the system, development of organic will be a snail pace.

When we discuss about the issues of chemical element in agriculture, even though everyone understood and accept the negative effects and un-sustainability of using extensive chemical fertilizers, the one major challenge is people's unwillingness to leave the same due to high apprehension of total crops failure.

Further, current farmers in the state are even reluctant to use alternative method like Bio-fertilizers such as Bokashi and vermin compost which are very effective for soil nutrient incentives and product substantive. The farmers are still unwilling to cop up with the feeling of crops being reduced.

It is confirmed that intensive use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides virtually kills the originality of soil year by year. It is full verified from Toubul and Khoijuman in Bishnupur district that no farming becomes possible without further chemical inputs. It happens like a Gospel stand as no chemical fertilizers, no harvest at all.

Finally, while commercial intention is high, human health risk and socio-economic implications are blinded. Even production of dairy and its products, poultry and its products, piggery, fishery etc. are almost corrupted with processed non-organic and artificial machine made feeds. As such, non-organic products flooded in all local markets all over Manipur.

Conclusion

A wide awareness and campaign for Organic Revolution is inevitable today. Significance of organic life should be encouraged. Maintaining soil health is compelling for making agriculture a sustainable activity. It is high time to realise the un-sustainability of chemical inputs in agriculture in the perspective of soil health, human health and ecological balance in the larger interest of environment integrity. Up-coming generations will put blame to us unless we take right steps today.

Initiative of state Govt regarding organic revolution seems to be rather slow as of now. Side by side emphasis and proactive initiatives by individual, group, NGOs and Govt, is highly suggested towards achieving 100% organic state.

Special stress also need to be given to voluntary organisations/NGOs and formation of chain organic farmers' association with schemes, subsidy and other feasible grant or incentives to the green growers and manufacturers of bio-fertilizers would be a great feat towards flourishing organic revolution in the state of Manipur.


* Jajo Themson wrote this article for e-pao.net
The writer is an Environment Activist and can be contacted at thmsontezonge(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was webcasted on 08 December 2023 .



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