ECHOcommunity Conversations

Pesticides and Synthetic Fertilizers

I follow a Facebook group dedicated to regenerative agriculture, and recently I read through responses to a question about farming without the use of pesticides or synthetic fertilizers. I was surprised when there were about a dozen farms or farmers who claimed to use no pesticides or synthetic fertilizers of any kind, and still grow enough to feed themselves or even enough to turn a small profit.

I’m curious to know if anyone in ECHO Community can corroborate such claims. Have you achieved good yields or a small profit from farming without pesticides or synthetic fertilizers? Do you know of anyone who is doing so?

Any links or contact information to folks doing this are appreciated! : )

Farm generated fertility is possible! we have been at it for 20 years and never spent a PESO on a bag of fertilizer or bottle of pesticide. We have a profitable market garden, livestock production and agro-forestry integrated into a natural farming system for sustainable agriculture in the tropics… http://edn.link/4qkdac
It is impossible to regenerate an ecosystem without livestock, work with nature not against it!

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Thank you for sharing, Keith! It is encouraging to read about your experience.

My primary concern is how we can achieve food security and even a small amount of monetary profit without the use of commercial pesticides and fertilizers, such that smallholders could sustainably do this year after year on their own. I’ve heard claims of sustainability and profitability, and then I find out that free volunteer labor and fundraising galas are the only things that keep such a system afloat. Are you able to maintain regenerative ag practices without these extra supports that are unlikely to be available to most smallholders?

Thanks!

Yes. Our market garden is creating an annual surplus that supports our orphanage for the last 15 years. Our training center was developed from donations but kept separate from charity and farm profits but includes value added processing like cheese, capsulized plant powders, salsa, kambucha etc. We leverage our surpluses and do not sell to middlemen. We lost all our restaurants and resorts in lockdowns and pivoted to direct sales and now deliver to homes weekly based on our harvest and processing. See FreshSheet attatched…

Hope you find a way to help your community and may God bless your day!

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That’s amazing! Thank you for sharing!