The government has taken steps to import the required quantities of pesticides and herbicides, which are more toxic than fertilizers, through local companies.
Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture Prof. Uditha K. Jayasinghe has stated this to the media today.
On the 14th of this month, the National Farmers’ Federation of Sri Lanka submitted a memorandum to the Minister of Agriculture stating that the government should fulfill four conditions for the success of organic paddy cultivation during the Maha season.
The four conditions are as follows.
The government should make organic fertilizer available through Agrarian Service Centers on time.
The government should take responsibility for the fertilizers so provided.
In case of any reduction or other damage to the paddy cultivation using this fertilizer, the government should take the responsibility and agree to pay compensation for the damages.
In addition, the sale of pesticides and herbicides currently available in the market at exorbitant prices should be controlled and farmers should be given the opportunity to purchase them at guaranteed prices.
The Ministry of Agriculture said in a statement that Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage had telephoned the President to inform him of the contents of the memorandum and the President had agreed to fulfill the four conditions.
According to the agreement, the Ministry of Agriculture is importing these highly toxic chemicals, pesticides and herbicides, for organic farming.