Natural Farming | Definition, History and Benefits

Natural Farming

What is Natural Farming

Natural Farming is a diverse farming system that blends crops, plants, and livestock to maximize functional biodiversity. It is increases farmers’ revenue while providing numerous other benefits such as soil fertility restoration, environmental health, and mitigating and/or reducing greenhouse gas emissions. It is based on ecological processes that occur on or around farms.

Natural Farming also known as “chemical- free farming and livestock based”.

This type of farming provides a solution to a variety of issues, including food insecurity, farmer anguish, and health issues caused by pesticide and fertilizer residue in food and water, as well as global warming, climate change, and ecological disasters. It also has the potential to create jobs, hence reducing rural youth migration. As the name implies, this is the art, practises, and, increasingly, science of working with nature to achieve much more with less.

History of Natural Farming

It becomes clear that this natural farming system has its roots in the pioneering work of Masanobu Fukuoka (1913-2008). Fukuoka, a renowned Japanese farmer and philosopher, popularized the notion of natural farming with his landmark book “The One-Straw Revolution” in 1975.

Masanobu Fukuoka is regarded as the “Father/Pioneer of Natural Farming” in the World.

Benefits of Natural Farming

Increase crop yield: It is a method of increasing crop yields by optimising key production parameters such as labour, soil quality, and equipment utilisation while avoiding the use of synthetic inputs such as fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides.

Increase Farmer’s Yield: It aim to make farming viable and aspirational by improving farmer’s income as a result of cost savings, reduced risks, similar yields, income from intercropping, and increasing crop intensity.

Minimize cost of production: Natural farming aim to significantly reduce production costs by encouraging farmers to create critical nutrients and plant protection materials from locally available resources, eliminating the need for external and commercial inputs such as fertilizers and other chemicals.

Ensure better health: Farmers and consumers have been demonstrated to be harmed by fertilizers and insecticides. While applying chemical inputs, farmers are exposed to pollutants. It can minimize the prevalence of noncommunicable diseases by substituting such foreign inputs.

Environment conservation: It promotes the use of an agroecology framework, which helps to decrease the risks connected with the uncertainties of climate change. It encourages farmers to utilise low-cost indigenous inputs and to avoid using chemical fertilizers and pesticides.

Rejuvenate soil health: Natural farming is more than just avoiding using chemical fertilizers and pesticides; This revitalizes the soil bacteria, which enhances soil health. Rejuvenating soil microorganisms with bio-inoculums helps to increase plant nutritional content, resulting in higher bioavailability for people.

Facts About Natural Farming

  • Father of Natural Farming- Masanobu Fukuoka
  • Books written by Masanobu Fukuoka- 1. The One Straw Revolution, 2. The Natural Way of Farming
  • National Centre for Organic and Natural Farming (NCO&F) is located at Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh.
  • World’s first university of Natural Farming and Organic Agricultural University is located at Sultanpura, Gujarat.

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