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Bali allocates Rp 8 billion to organic farming - Jakarta Post
Last modified: 2011-06-02 20:10:49

The 49-year-old Jero Leni was spreading chemical fertilizer on his 2,150-square-meter rice field in Kerobokan area in Badung regency, having inherited the paddy fields from his parents.

"I have to work very hard to increase the harvest yield by using nonorganic fertilizer," said Leni.

Every harvest, the yield will reach around 3 tons.

"I can only sell half of the yield *1.5 tons*, while the rest of the yield will go towards feeding the family."

"The cost of planting the seed and fertilizing the soil have been very high, at around Rp 1 million," Leni said, adding that 30 percent of his operational costs would go toward buying chemical fertilizer.

Dr. Kartini, head of the Bali Organic Association, who has conducted a comprehensive study on the impact of chemical fertilizers on soil and on products, says the system had made farmers depended on fertilizers.

More than that, most rice fields and plantations in Bali are dilapidated and severely damaged.

Under the leadership of Governor Made Mangku Pastika, the Bali government has launched a special program to implement an integrated organic farming system.

"We have allocated Rp 8 billion worth of funds to raise awareness about the organic farming program to the all farmers in Bali ," Governor Pastika said.

The fund will also be distributed across Bali to promote organic farming.

"Each village will receive Rp 200 million," added Pastika. There are eight villages including Busung Biu, Sepang, Pucak Sari villages in Buleleng regency, which have already implemented the integrated organic farming.

"We will have added another 10 villages in the program by the end of this year," the governor said.

Data from Bali Agriculture Office states that in 2009, the island only had 228,153 hectares of fertile rice fields. Various housing and hotel construction projects have eaten up at least 700 hectares of fertile rice fields every year.

Ni Komang Erviani, The Jakarta Post, Denpasar | Wed, 09/30/2009

Keywords: Bali,organic, organik, farming, BOA, Pastika
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