2016, VOLUME 3 ISSUE 1Pages: 70-77
Prospects of organic farming in hill farms of Nepal
Sabita Aryal Khanna
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Agriculture is the most important industry contributing about 37.0% to national GDP and provides livelihood for over 65.7% of the population of Nepal. Chemical based agriculture has destroyed the ecosystem, declined natural resource base, provided diminishing returns, reduced food self-sufficiency, forced for migration, disrupted food security and export opportunities. The landscape with diversified flora, fauna, ecosystem, and manpower availability gives opportunity to organize movement of organic agriculture thus some products of Nepal like tea and coffee have already been certified as organic products and have good export returns. The practice of producing organic vegetables, fruit, milk, meat, fishes and their product are also increasing. Thulodurlung VDC of Lalitpur district is the one which is becoming popular for producing organic coffee. Hence the study is conducted at this site and also at nearby village Chamranbesi VDC of Kavre district. The study was aimed to examine the existing status of farming as well as prospects of other organic crops including vegetables, cereals and dairy products. Different approaches such as PRA, FGD, Household survey and Key informants’ interviews were used to collect the information. Data collected were analyzed quantitatively and qualitatively. The overall findings showed that organic farming can be successfully done in both sites. However, it is easier to achieve the result in Thulodurlung as compared to Chamranbesi. There is a growing attitude of sound biological and livestock based farming. Lack of functional road, unavailability of irrigation water, disease and pest infestation on crops are major challenges. On a commercial scale, apart from organic coffee, other farm and organic dairy products such as ghee, cheese, butter need to be marketed. There is an instant need of attention on sound marketing strategies, technology of processing the harvest and overall improvement in the capacity of farmer to produce organic crops.