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IPEN

A Toxics-Free Future

Understanding & Phasing out of Pesticides in Small Scale Farming in South Africa

In 2010, the NGO groundWork (Friends of the Earth South Africa) convened over 65 farmers from around the country who expressed a desire to educate themselves about the safe handling and proper use of pesticides. Over the course of two days, participants took part in educational sessions that included guided tours of farms practicing permaculture and organic practices. Other interactive discussion sessions featured conversations about basic workplace safety. Additionally, farmers were given an introduction as to how their small farms are affected by the industrialized farming practices of large companies such as DuPont and Monsanto. Farmers reported leaving with a sense of motivation about using integrated pest management techniques and a better understanding of the links between big business, government policy, and farming. A hallmark of this workshop was a signed declaration by participants lobbying the government to adopt policies supporting safe practices and small farms.

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