Theunis Botha of Foundations for Farming said last week the organization had launched Operation Trumpet Call in an effort to raise awareness of the viability of using organic fertilizer.
“Using natural products such as manure, we are trying to teach people in the rural areas that they can feed themselves and live on the produce of their land without begging,” said Botha.
One major constraint for communal farmers in the country has been the issue of imports such as fertilizer. Over the years, farmers have become increasingly dependent on handouts from the government and NGOs. Botha said Operation Trumpet Call’s aim was to make people self-sufficient and reliant.
Most Zimbabweans who did not benefit from the land “reform” programme have been tilling the same piece of land for decades. The land is now spent and cannot produce much without the addition of costly fertilizers, which ultimately destroy the environment.
Changing rainfalls patterns and also the sterile soil make the chance of a bountiful harvest a mere pipedream for most. Botha said the cost and unavailability of artificial fertilizers could be overcome through the use of manure from compost that can be made by families working together.
“Manure is there for fertilizer and all the rural communities need is seed. After that they can feed themselves and with the extra money they can make a profit to buy other things,” said Botha.
Over the years, Foundations for Farming has trained thousands of communal farmers in the advantages of using natural methods of agriculture. The organisation has also been involved in training workers on prison farms around the country, where Botha said the results were particularly pleasing.
Foundations for Farming is working in collaboration with the Zimbabwe Prison Service, on 25 prison farms and Botha said that so far the yields have improved significantly.
Foundations for Farming is an initiative aimed at bringing transformation to individuals, communities and nations through faithful and productive use of the land.Post published in: News