Global Forum on Food Security and Nutrition (FSN Forum)

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      Organic farming has higher labour requirements for tasks like weeding and composting. A need is to remove subsidies for chemical farming and to encourage organic restoration. Healthy organic soils are more resilient to drought or flooding (e.g. Keyline farming). Over-riding this is Permaculture that provides solutions for stable and self-sufficient societies under any climate. 

      With organic farming the rapid urbanization and migrations may be reduced. Permaculture allows people can live entirely adequately in their homelands;it also aims to teach teachers. Proper rural communications and network access reduces need to move into cities. Sadly farmers are often the poorest because food is not sold at realistic prices; yet without food society collapses fairly rapidly. Healthy food should cost more.


      Органическое сельское хозяйство требует более высоких затрат труда для таких задач, как прополка и компостирование. Необходимо устранить субсидии для химического земледелия и поощрять органическое восстановление. Здоровые органические почвы более устойчивы к засухе или наводнениям (например, контурная подготовка почвы). Еще важнее то, что это пермакультура, которая обеспечивает решения для стабильных и самодостаточных обществ в любом климате.

      При органическом сельском хозяйстве быстрая урбанизация и миграция могут быть сокращены. Пермакультура позволяет людям жить абсолютно адекватно на своей родине; она также направлена на обучение учителей. Соответствующая деятельность по коммуникации в сельской местности и доступ к сетям уменьшают необходимость перемещения в города. К сожалению, фермеры часто являются самыми бедными, потому что пища не продается по реалистичным ценам; но без продовольствия общество разрушится довольно быстро. Здоровое питание должно стоить дороже.

    • Russian translation below

      Permaculture offers many solutions to problems of food production and sustainable societies.

      Just one simple option that is available for anyone at any scale is to compost all organic wastes (including manure), preferably with worms (vermicompost). Then soil fertility can be maintained with higher yields and more reliable crops. The excess earthworms can also be sold or fed to chickens or fish. Aquaponics is another option that also uses earthworms. 

      Пермакультура предлагает множество решений проблем производства продуктов питания и устойчивых обществ.

      Только один простой вариант, который доступен для любого человека, в любом масштабе, заключается в компостировании всех органических отходов (включая навоз), предпочтительно с червями (вермикомпост (биогумус)). Благодаря этой технологии почвы может поддерживаться плодородность почвы, обеспечивая более высокие урожаи и культуры будут более надежными. Избыточное количество дождевых червей также можно продавать или кормить до цыплят или рыбу. Аквапоника - еще один вариант, который также использует дождевых червей.

    • Hello.

      Thank you for the opportunity to comment.

      Any consideration of Sustainable Food Systems need to be prefaced with the basic information that 99% of food comes from soil and that 98% of biodiversity is on land, not in oceans. At the same time the greatest, yet most ignored, environmental issue is loss of precious topsoil at a rate of 2,000 tonnes per second.

      Rebuilding topsoil by preventing erosion and recycling all organic matter via earthworms is the most sensible and effective solution.

      Please find my recent review paper (or just look at the graphics) - .

      Kind regards,

      Rob Blakemore PhD

    • Question response from R.J. Blakemore PhD [email protected] FAO-GSP, IUCN-SSC

      Is an International Code of Conduct for the Use and Management of Fertilizers beneficial and useful? To whom, and why?

      Yes and NO. It is important to curtail the excess use of NPK that are poisoning soil, air and water but, unless a viable alternative is offered it is pointless.  The C of C mainly helps industry, yet Rockstrom et al. (2009) identified excess Nitrogen fertilizers as the greatest hazard to the planet after species extinctions (partly caused by N fertilizers). They recommended an immediate reduction by 25% but offered no replacement. The obvious replacement is to recycle organic ‘wastes’ via earthworms as vermicomposts.

      Does this Fertilizer Code of Conduct address all aspects necessary to ensure the responsible use of fertilizers, optimizing benefits while minimizing risks?

      No – it is too synthetic chemical industry biased.  I believe we need to reduce NPK and to rely on recycling and natural mineralization to fertilize forests, crops and pastures.

      Are there any topics or subject matter missing from this Fertilizer Code of Conduct? If so, what are they?

      Vermicomposts are not mentioned yet they are the most natural and proven solution (e.g. Indore). Essentially free and completely scaleable (from under kitchen sink to nationwide) they can be utilized by individuals, schools, farmers and organizations.  When Soviet Union collapsed and with the continued US embargo, Cuba relied on vermicomposting and organiponicos to supply its food.  It now has one of the lowest cancer rates.

      Are there redundancies or unnecessary items or subjects within this Code of Conduct? If so, what are they?

      Why mention biochar?  This is a minor amendment – not a fertilizer – that it over-hyped by biocharlatans that offers no benefit whatsoever over traditional and proven composts.  It is a needless distraction!

      Do you have any other suggestions or comments not covered in the above questions? If so, please elaborate.

      Since the first world war, 100 years ago, there has been excess nitrogen from munitions.  The disposal of this has diverted research and funding from more natural N-fixation and re-cycling.

      Rothamsted Research in UK have the longest running LTE in the world at 175 years.  In all this time they have been unable to prove that synthetic NPK offers any benefit over FYM in terms of soil health, yield or costs.  Surely it is time to reconsider and to restore natural production.

      A recent summary paper is: .


    • Hello,

      My recent paper shows that organic management compared to conventional/chemical  farming provides preserves the endemic earthworms and soil organic matter whilst  increasing soil water storage by +28.7% on average ( If the soil bulk density is 1.0 g/cm3, this is directly relates to having the equivalent of 28.7% extra rainfall. These dozen or so studies were mainly from Europe and Asia.

      In Africa, for example, Lal (1974) made comparisons in similar situations in Nigeria, where eudrilid earthworms are common, and found about 24 times the numbers of worm casts and infiltration rates almost doubled under zero-till plots.  Also in Nigeria, Wilkinson (1975) showed a positive relationship between infiltration rates and earthworms in fallow, and Aina (1984) confirmed a 2.5 times increase in infiltrability due to earthworms in forest soils. 

      My recommendation would be to vermi-compost all organic wastes for return to the fields, to maintain leguminous cover-crops to fix nitrogen & to protect the soil from erosion, and to use non-chemical weed & pest control to preserve the worms.

      Ref - Blakemore, R.J. (2018). Critical Decline of Earthworms from Organic Origins under Intensive, Humic SOM-Depleting Agriculture. Soil Systems. 2(2): 33. [].

      Blog -….