May 09, Colombo: The first cabinet paper to be submitted by the Ministry of Agriculture after the reassignment of ministers next week will put forward a proposal by the new Minister of Agriculture Mahinda Amaraweera to promote organic farming.
Minister Amaraweera said that as the new subject minister he will submit the first Cabinet paper for the promotion of organic agriculture without the use of toxic agrochemicals to the Cabinet of Ministers for approval.
At present, 3801 farmers in Sri Lanka are cultivating paddy under organic farming on 4955 acres. These farmers cultivate traditional local varieties of paddy and a high price is available for the organic rice out of those at the local market.
The cabinet paper, which aims to encourage farmers to cultivate organic farming will propose providing financial assistance to farmers to encourage them to use organic farming instead of giving them a fertilizer subsidy.
The fertilizer subsidy will be granted to the farmers who use chemical fertilizer on their paddy fields.