According to Puerto Rican ecology and natural resources professor Dr. Ivette Perfecto from the University of Michigan， farmers could benefit while helping to save the planet from turning to organic farming and agroecology, or working along nature’s principles to produce food.
In her research, Dr. Perfecto observed that large crop agricultural landscapes, such as coffee farms in Costa Rica, are able to host diverse and healthy wildlife. In contrast, isolated patches of rainforest or nature preserves are not able to sustain even the reduced number of species living there.
Her studies concluded that small-scale farmers and their organic or agroecological methods, the latter of which minimize the use of fertilizers and do not use pesticides, could therefore protect biodiversity – with farmers benefiting from greater yields.
She stated, "A variety of studies have shown convincingly that organic agriculture is at least as productive as industrial agriculture， and according to Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) data, the smaller the farm the more productivity.
In other words， if you want to increase production the most efficient way to do so is to break up the mega farms, distribute the land to small-scale farmers and provide training in agroecology." Dr. Perfecto recently co-authored a book on the solution titled, "Nature’s Matrix: Linking Agriculture, Conservation and Food Sovereignty" in which she cites the rapid deforestation of the Amazon rainforest in emphasizing the need to shift toward small-scale organic farming.
According to related research by Dr. Lester Brown, president of the Earth Policy Institute, the Amazon is being cleared both by cattle ranching and soybean farming, with soybean crops for cattle feed causing both crop fields and grazing lands to extend even deeper into the forest.
Dr. Brown states that the key to protecting the rainforest’s biodiversity is to decrease consumers’ demand for meat products and their associated soy crops.
Our appreciation, Dr. Perfecto, for these insights into a more efficient and sustainable agriculture sector, as we thank Dr. Brown for addressing the issue’s root cause.
Let us step in awareness to nourish the world through the most eco-conscious and plentiful method of organic vegan farming. As in an interview published in the September 2009 edition of The House Magazine, Supreme Master Ching Hai has frequently highlighted the transformation of our agricultural system that would return balance to our imperiled planet.