Soil health is the core of food production. Soil health determines food health which determines human health. EWB Ireland will work with Farm Social to support 200 subsistence farmers in Nepal to create small enterprises. Farm Social introduces farmers to biochar kiln technology, which improves soil quality and overall crop yields. The kiln can be manufactured locally with minimal training, skills and materials, and is designed to burn organic waste to create a nutrient dense fertiliser.
4.6 million people in Nepal are food insecure. Malnutrition is a major issue; more than 40% of children under the age of five suffer from stunting. The majority of farmers work on a subsistence basis, vulnerable to drought, floods and unstable weather patterns due to climate change. Smallholder farmers lack the financial resources to access fertilizer to increase crop yields. The pandemic further exacerbates their vulnerability due to lack of access to local markets.
EWB Ireland, together with the social enterprise Farm Social and Field Ready Nepal, will work with rural Nepalese communities to train 200 farmers in the use of biochar kiln technology. Biochar is a carbon rich product with the capacity to increase soil moisture and soil nutrients. Farm Social have designed and tested the biochar kiln which can be manufactured using resources that are available in local Nepalese markets. The kiln gives farmers access to a locally produced fertilizer.
The lives of 200 farmers will be transformed through access to a local technology that will improve food security. Farmers will be able to provide for their families and communities which will have a range of lasting positive impacts: nutritional, health, educational and social (for example more children, particularly girls, will be able to attend school). Furthermore, these farmers will be able to train others in the use of the biochar kiln technology, creating a network of entrepreneurs.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).