Dr Jude Obi, lecturer in the Department of Soil Science and Land Resource Management at Uyo University, says organic farming combines traditional best practices with modern farming methods for health benefits.
Obi said this during his online presentation on “Organic Farming to the Rescue” organized by the Journalists Go Organic Initiative.
He said any non-“rooted” agricultural practice thrives and thrives on the principles of health, ecology, equity and care should be abandoned.
“These principles express the contributions and vision that organic farming presents to humanity in achieving a secure and equal global society.
“It supports and improves the health of the soil, plants, animals, humans and the planet as a whole and indivisible, relies on living ecological systems, mimics them and helps to maintain them.
“It is built on relationships that ensure fairness with regard to the common environment and life opportunities, manage prudently and responsibly to protect the health and well-being of current and future generations and of the ‘environment.
“Any activity, process, practice that does not comply, does not respect and does not fully respect these principles is clearly not good for the environment and its inhabitants,” he stressed.
Obi, who is also the coordinator of the Knowledge Center for Organic Agriculture (KCOA) in Africa, also highlighted the potential of ecological agriculture.
“Ecological agriculture generates both economic value and sustainable development that must be seriously promoted to allow Africa to exploit this niche.
“The continent should adopt the practice of organic farming due to the fragile environment that inhabits it; for example, the best soils are alluvial deposits found in large river valleys.
“Most soils are difficult to cultivate, although soils in the humid tropics can be quite rich due to the forest cover and the rapid decomposition of organic matter.
“However, intense precipitation leaches most of the nutrients from plants, resulting in the formation of latosols or ferrosols and luvisols with some undesirable characteristics.”
According to Obi, towards the deserts, the soils are sandy and deep but poor in humus and quite infertile, which leaves room for xerosols which are quite poor in humus.
“Faced with these fragile environments, it is the episode of worsening land degradation.
“The bottom line is that these soils are inherently not resilient and management using synthetic resources and heavy equipment is not sustainable in the long term. He caught up with us earlier than expected.
“These explain the failure of all the big established farms in Nigeria and will continue to chase away those who decide not to listen that organic farming is the answer.
Obi said that research and practical results had shown that as the conventional system continuously increases the inputs of soil amendments to herbicides, pesticides, insecticides and finally genetically modified; organic practices increase profits and profitability.
Listing the benefits of organic farming, Obi said, “It has positive effects on the soil by improving soil condition, reducing soil pollution, erosion and flooding, purifying groundwater. , energy efficiency, better flavor and better nutrition, helps pollinators and maintains biodiversity.
“Organic foods and agricultural products have better nutrition, help us stay healthy, poison-free, organic foods improve taste and extend shelf life.
“Has antioxidant content, improves heart condition, antibiotic resistance, reduced pesticides, stronger immune system, products are poison free, lower levels of toxic metals.”
Obi said that with the crisis facing humanity, from strange diseases to the harsh environment, to natural disasters, to communal clashes and to war, “it has become clear that the starting point is options. respectful of the environment and that organic farming has taken the lead “.