Government is providing several incentives to urge planters adopt organic farming with a view to decrease reliance on chemical inputs and improve the quality of local food production.

This statement was made yesterday by the Minister of Business, Enterprise and Cooperatives, Mr S. Bholah, during a site visit at a Cooperative Organic Farm in Clemencia in the presence of the Minister of Financial Services, Good Governance and Institutional Reforms, Mr D. Sesungkur, and other eminent personalities.

In his address, Minister Bholah highlighted that cooperatives are being guided to opt for a sustainable agricultural development. The increased use of pesticides and insecticides, he cautioned, engenders serious harmful impacts on human health and environment.

He underlined that organic farming helps to sustain the quality of soil and crops, protect the ecosystem and ensure a healthy population at the same time. In its endeavour to empower planters, Government is providing a number of incentives ranging from appropriate trainings by experts, grant facilities, and various new schemes, Mr Bholah emphasised.

For his part, the Minister of Financial Services, Good Governance and Institutional Reforms, Mr Sesungkur underlined that organic farming is one of the many reforms that are being brought to the various sectors namely agriculture, education and health amongst others.

He reiterated that the values of good governance are in line with the preservation of environment as well as the promotion of public health and that everyone should engage more in energy-driven activities.

On that occasion, some 12 members of cooperative societies, who will attend a course on organic farming at the National Centre of Organic Farming (NCOF) in Ghaziabad, India, were handed over training materials and cheques under the Cooperative Development Fund Education Scheme.

Participants will have the opportunity to acquire the technical know-how and expertise during their 30-days stay at NCOF following which they will be provided with a certificate in organic farming. On their return, trained participants will have the opportunity to share their knowledge with other planters and they will also be encouraged to certify for the Mauritius General Agricultural Practices as well as aspire for an international accreditation which will support their development.

This training to members of cooperative societies has materialised following discussions that Minister Bholah had during his visit to India in January 2017.

Source: Government of Mauritius