Food security: AU Commission trains 90 organic farmers

The African Union Commission (AUC), said on
Tuesday that it had trained 90 organic farmers,
practitioners and exporters from East and West
Africa, in order to enhance food security in the

Mr Jonathan Ocran, the Policy Officer, Livestock,
Rural Economy and Agriculture of the Commission,
disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency
of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.

“To date, 90 organic farmers, practitioners and
exporters from the East African community and
ECOWAS, have been trained.

“By this undertaking, organic agriculture platforms
in these regions have also been strengthened.

“The African Union (AU) has been supporting
organic agriculture and in 2011, a decision was
passed by the Heads of States and Governments of
African Union to promote organic agriculture on
the African continent.

“The AU is also supporting and playing pivotal role
in the formation and functioning of the continental
ecological organic agriculture steering committee.”

Ocran recalled that a recent study by researchers
at the New Castle University had revealed that
organically grown produce and cereals have 90 per
cent and 69 per cent more anti-oxidants than
pesticide residual and conventional grown ones.

“A 30 year side-by-side comparison of organic and
conventional agricultural systems has revealed that
organic system match or even out-performed
conventional system in terms of yield, profitability
and energy efficiency.

“The research equally showed that organic
agriculture also have positive effect on soil water,
water quality and also rural communities,’’ he

Ocran also said that the AUC committee on organic
agriculture has developed an action plan to for the
development and promotion of organic agriculture
in the continent.

“This committee has met thrice since its
inauguration in October 2013 and it has revised the
action plan and also developed strategic plans for
the year 2015 to 2025.

“This plan has provided guidelines for the
promotion and development of organic agriculture
in Africa.

“The African Union has also been organising
training workshops for participants for member

“The training workshops are in two parts: one is on
organic standard and certification system and the
other one is on modern organic production and
marketing,’’ he said.

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