The AgriGuide of Best Practices for Organic Production (BPOP) is aimed at providing farmers with learning tools to increase their knowledge in order for them to ensure a sustainable agricultural production and productivity on crops management and income.
The AgriGuide includes information regarding food and cash crops and is aimed at small scale farmers. The crops listed are cultivated in many African countries, and more specifically in Senegal and Mali.
This guide has been developed by ICVolunteers as a result of a decentralized field study about technologies and the specific needs of farmers, herders and fishermen in the two countries. The AgriGuide is one of the concrete outcomes of the E-TIC program.
The AgriGuide was developed upon request of the farmers with whom we have been working. Our field work has clearly shown that conventional farming practices are largely used in Senegal and Mali, yet farmer are conscious about the fact that the overuse of fertilizers and pesticides will in the longer run harm them, as it is not sustainable, impoverishes the soils and endangers the health of farmers and field workers. From our experience, many farmers, both women and men, show great interest in new farming methods; especially when they are fully involved in a participatory approach and low-cost technologies, which contribute to improving their yields, and stabilize and increase their income.
Organic agriculture (OA) is a holistic approach promoting and enhancing the health of aggro-ecosystems, including biodiversity, biological cycles, and soil biological activity. OA emphasizes the adoption of best management practices in preference of off-farm inputs, taking into account that regional conditions require locally adapted systems. This strategy is accomplished by adopting best agronomic practices to fulfill any specific function within the farming system.
Organic agriculture is knowledge-intensive. Therefore, education is a key to developing sustainable agriculture. Farmers need to know how to: