The role of green manure/cover crops in smallholder agriculture
Mtangazaji: Roland Bunch
Tukio: ECHO International Agriculture Conference 2019 (19-11-2019)
Session : Green manure/cover crops are the only feasible way for smallholder farmers to significantly increase the organic matter content of their basic grain fields (that is, anything over 0.5 ha) at a reasonable cost. We can now say that we know of good species and systems that will work in virtually all farming systems and in almost every tropical environment around the world. Therefore, if we want to either improve long-term soil fertility or long-term resilience to droughts and climate change in basic grain fields, at a cost smallholder farmers can afford, we have no other options than to be using green manure/cover crops.
Presenter : Roland Bunch has worked in agricultural development for just over half a century and in over 50 nations, directing or administering programs and doing consultancies. He wrote the classic work on agricultural extension among smallholder farmers called Two Ears of Corn (World Neighbors), which was translated into ten languages. The second edition of his book Restoring the Soil (ECHO) was published earlier this year. Roland has also done consultancies for the Ford Foundation, Cornell University, the top NGOs of Canada, Great Britain, the Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland, and the governments of Guatemala, Honduras, Swaziland, and Vietnam. He has been nominated for the Global 500 Award, the End the Hunger Prize of the President of the United States, and the World Food Prize.