The Government’s new policy decision to go for organic farming with a rigid ‘no’ to chemical fertilizer and other agrochemicals has moved to a new controversial debate in the country. In such a situation, under the guidance of Rev. Fr. Mahendra Gunatilleke, National Director, CSL the National Food Security Division, CSL conducted a National level Webinar on “Current Fertilizer Policy in Sri Lanka and how to convert inorganic Agro Chemical users into Organic farmers” through Zoom technology on 29th June 2021.
There were approximately 100 participants including Diocesan Centre Directors, Food Security staff of Diocesan Centres, selected Agriculture Instructors from the Department of Agriculture and with a representation of Lead farmers from Anuradhapura, Kurunegala, Colombo, Chilaw, Galle, Ratnapura and Baddula Dioceses. The main speaker Prof. P. I. Yapa, Senior Lecturer in the University of Sabaragamuwa, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Sabaragamuwa was able to reached the main objective of this webinar by his versatile and eloquent speech on the use of organic fertilizers and its ecological values, hazards impact of usage of agrochemicals and economical aspects, which was inspired by the participants.
Prof. Yapa elaborated on the present context of the Fertilizer issue and emphasized the need and importance of collaborative efforts to overcome the barriers to convert for Eco-Agricultural practices and further focused on intervention of the government to bring this matter under control in Sri Lanka. The discussions were conducted in a participatory manner, which included the questions and answers session to provide opportunities for mutual exchange of views and experiences among the participants. It was ended as a fruitful discussion and all agreed with the fact that organic farming is environmentally friendly and healthier to people. However, there should be proper intervention by subject professionals to implement this policy among the farmer community in Sri Lanka.