ISSP [2019] : Promoting Alternatives to Harmful Pesticides on Small Farms

Tomatoes are an important cash crop in the Tao Ngoi District that are vulnerable to diseases, pests, and fungi. Pesticides are an affordable and easy pest management solution that increase crop yield and quality but have negative effects on farmer health and local ecosystems. Alternative farming methods such as organic fertilizers, Good Agricultural Practice, and Effective Microorganisms reduce the need for pesticides but not all farmers in the area practice these methods. Our team sought to understand the limitations of adopting organic methods and to identify the most feasible alternatives. We piloted a program for students at the Tao Ngoi Pattanasuksa School that demonstrated the benefits of mulch, EM technology, and crop rotation and provided recommendations to help farmers decrease their pesticide use