MINISTER for Agriculture, Natural Resources, Livestock and Fishing Mmanga Mjengo Mjawir has joined farmers' groups to call on farmers to adopt organic farming to improve their health and soil fertility. The minister said the government would support organic farming because Zanzibar had the potential for becoming an organic farming country in the region.
"The government is committed to promoting organic farming in the country and has been providing help to farmers to further it. Let us promote organic farming. Sustainable production can be achieved through organic farming and improvement of soil fertility. Demand for organic products is high in the global market."
Speaking during a one-day meeting to discuss how to encourage organic farming, the minister said the policy of agriculture and the poverty reduction strategy also supported organic farming.
The minister thanked the Vegetable and Fruit Farmers Association (Uwamwima) group for promoting organic farming in Zanzibar. Uwamwima leader Khamis Issa told stakeholders that his organisation had been promoting organic farming because it was ideal for soil fertility and human consumption compared to the use of synthetic fertilisers.
Dr Mwatima Abdalla (national chairperson) and Mr Gama Jordan (chief executive officer) Tanzania Organic Agriculture Movement (TOAM) also said organic farming was a solution to malnutrition in the country. The officers urged the government to set aside a budget for promotion of organic farming as farming was possible in almost all areas of Zanzibar.