Kasungu: World Agro forestry Centre (ICRAF) has urged farmers in the country to embrace the use of compost and organic manure in their farms to realize bumper harvests and achieve food security in their households.
ICRAF Malawi Representative, Isaac Nyoka said on Wednesday in Kasungu farmers should stop relying on chemical fertilizers which he said are expensive and push up the cost of production.
Farmers have to be encouraged to use organic manure and fertilizer trees like gliricidia and tephorosia because chemical fertilizers do not perform well in degraded soils without natural compost.
That’s why even good hybrid seed gives low yield than what it can produce in good mixed soils, said Nyoka.
ICRAF has been implementing a project Agroforestry Food Security Program II which advocates for adoption of climate-smart agriculture by using organic fertilizers through innovations like fertilizer trees and conservation agriculture.
Kasungu District Council’s Agricultural Service Committee Chairperson, Councilor Chisomo Mbembeza, said the intervention by ICRAF through its project has assisted a lot of farmers in the district to get more yield through the use of organic fertilizers.
A decade ago, farmers were not harvesting enough food because of degraded soil which was leading to food insecurity. But soon after the intervention, the soil gained its fertility and now we are better off, said Mbembeza.
The Agroforestry Food Security Program II has benefited 24,000 farmers of Mzimba and Kasungu districts with funding from Government of Flanders.
Source: Malawi News Agency MANA