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Zambian small scale farmers critical at cop27

In response to COP27 which is being held in Egypt, Kasisi Agriculture Training Centre (KATC), and Caritas Zambia briefed the Ministry of Green Economy and Environment on how the two non-governmental organizations are working with small scale farmers to promote Agroecology to enhance food security.

The brief took place on 4October 2022   at   KATC through the Ministry’s Principal Climate Change officer Kasanda Bunda who is one of the delegates at COP27 representing Zambia.

Mr Bunda and the rest of the crew including KATC founder Br. Paul Desmarias, SJ, KATC director Fr Claus Rectenwald, Caritas Zambia’s Programmes Officer Gertrude Siame and KATC agroecology trained farmer Alex Lupiya were guided through KATC demonstration garden and the Biofertilizer reactor by KATC Programmes director Fr Benoit Dondo.

The two NGOs went on to give the ministry facts on how food and traditional seed systems can be protected, and how the environment can be safeguarded in order to promote agro-biodiversity.

The issue is critical and is helping to represent a voice for the Zambian small-scale famers at COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt.

“It is such great work that Kasisi and Caritas are doing with the small-scale farmers because small scale farmers are the future to food security and improved climate change, as we who will be attending the COP27 it is important that it should be brought to light that small scale farmers especially in agroecology are as important as other farmers,” Mr Bunda who is also a biologist and ecologist said during the meeting.

Apart from the meeting, Mr Lupiya who is a KATC trained Agroecology farmer displayed his variety of local seeds that he stocks in his community seed bank. This diversity makes framers more resilient against climate change because of the variety of growth patterns, additionally it provides the family with nutritious and diversified food.

Later KATC and Caritas Zambia handed over a submission to the Zambian COP27 delegation that is highlighting the need to put small-scale farmers at the center of the negotiation strategy because small scale farmers are producing 70% of the food in Zambia but are the most vulnerable in terms of climate change.

It was further recommended to establish agriculture as an own constituted body within the United Nations Frameworks Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC), this can help engage directly with key stakeholders and ensure coordination and help to match the efforts in adaption and mitigation.

After refreshment with some organic produce from KATC, the delegates visited a training of staff members from Caritas Zambia. The trainers shared their experiences in working with small scale farmers all over Zambia in promoting agroecology and how the approach improved their lives.

KATC and Caritas Zambia work with small scale farmers to promote agroecology as away to enhance food security and sovereignty, protect traditional seed systems and knowledge as well as to safeguard the environment and promote agro-biodiversity.

This approach proves additionally to be most beneficial in terms of adaption of farming systems to climate and even reducing and mitigation the emission of greenhouse gases. This type of agriculture is therefore firmly in line with the National Determined Contributions (NDC) of Zambia.

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