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Asian Churches promote organic farming

ucanews.com reporter

ucanews.com reporter

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Support Asia's largest network of Catholic journalists and editors
Participants of the LGA consultation learn more about organic farming on a farm near Kandy
Participants of the LGA consultation learn more about organic farming on a farm near Kandy
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A representative body of Asian churches is seeking to highlight the importance of organic agriculture. A consultation on Life-giving agriculture (LGA), organized by the Christian Conference of Asia (CCA) in the Sri Lankan cities of Kandy and Colombo, has urged Churches to build awareness about organic and sustainable farming among people irrespective of their religion and beliefs. “This movement questions the role of the mainstream agricultural establishment in promoting practices that challenge economic, ecological and social sustainability,” the consultation said in a statement, acknowledging the growing LGA movement in Asia. 35 pastors, farmers, rural activists, youth and church leaders from across Asia attended the consultation which highlighted LGA’s principle of “utilizing nature’s benefits to the maximum and recovering nature’s regenerative ability.” The consultation featured worship, bible study, theoretical inputs, exposure trips to LGA and organic farming-practicing farms, country reports sharing, group discussions and informal sharing. It also recommended recycling organic matter and to maximize and enhance microbial activity by avoiding the use of chemical inputs such as chemical fertilizer, pesticides and weedicides. “Ecological initiatives such as household production of biofertilizers and community level production of biopesticides can build community strengths on the foundation of people’s existing capacity,” it added. The consultation, held in Sri Lanka on Nov. 22-27, was a follow-up to the first CCA-organized consultation held in Korea in 2006. According to CCA executive secretary Reverend Freddy De Alwis of the Sri Lankan Baptist Church, the CCA has taken a leading role in promoting LGA since mid-2005. The CCA is a regional ecumenical organization of Protestant and Orthodox Churches representing 17 national councils and over 100 Churches in 21 countries, including New Zealand, Australia and Iran. “The LGA forum in Korea has been another church-related outfit at the forefront of establishing an agricultural system based on organic farming,” it said. De Alwis added that the CCA will bring out a policy document on LGA for wider dissemination among Asian churches and civil society movements, and support a network of farmers in rural churches across the region. Related reports ´Model farmers´ share experiences about organic farming Bishops back environmentally-safe rice research AS12188.1630

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