Daily CSR
Daily CSR

Daily CSR
Daily news about corporate social responsibility, ethics and sustainability

The Practice Of Agroecologocal Farming Is The Futuristic Way For Cuba


SIAL, an agroecological endeavour shows Cuban farmer the way to be self sufficient.

Dailycsr.com – 16 September 2015 – Armando Marcelino Pi, an university professor, coordinated a group of thirty “agroecological farmers” who live in the rural mountainous terrain of western Cuba.  He and his team practice farming techniques that are “environmentally-friendly”, whereby he says:
“There is a need for a greater application of science and technology in agriculture; farmers must have access to the knowledge available in research centres”.
The farm is able to feed the four families that work together on it, with its ninety percent of arable land, it is completely self sufficient. Due to the lack of knowledge on the eco-friendly farming practices along with the inherent tendency of “resistance to change” combined with low rates of organic products, Pi thinks:
“Many small farmers have not yet joined the agroecological movement”.
The farm produces its own feed for cattle which is prepared “based on palm fruits, cornmeal and sugarcane flour” along with “organic fertiliser”. Many researchers and agricultural worker alike are in search for sustainable farming practice whereby many people across forty five Cuban municipalities have designed “a system of innovation in order to support local governments in boosting socioeconomic development”. in Iván Paneque’s words:
“We are trying to organise municipal groups with a diverse range of actors, to create a Local Agricultural Innovation System (SIAL) which would be the first of its kind in the country”.
The new initiative bears the slogan of “towards a participative focus in development practices” which is circulated through pamphlets wherein it is stated that in the year of 2000, the SIAL began to educate rural farmers about obtaining their “own seed”, encouraging women and youth participation in the farming work.
Likewise, there is an attempt of creating a network of farmers whereby needed help and support in “marketing and selling their produce more effectively” could easily be provided while “strengthening climate change adaptation and mitigation”. The said training initiative has been supported by the “government’s National Institute of Agricultural Sciences” along with “international development aid” whereby “50,000 people” have benefitted.
The programme aims to involve additional thirty municipalities into this practice by the year of 2017. SIAL looks forward to provide “alternatives for producing more with the limited resources”. However, things aren’t as hoped due to the “economic depression and decades of excessive centralisation”.
On the other hand, Cuba began to spend more on “research and development” work, while as per Paneque:
“...many projects and people are working on local agricultural innovation, but not as a system.
“It’s not enough to only reach the cooperatives, we have to go beyond that, to the municipal governments and the municipal agriculture offices (the local representative of the agriculture ministry) among others, to work together and join forces and pool resources.
“We have already presented the SIAL to the La Palma municipal government and we are waiting for it to be approved”.