A report by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has demonstrated that organic agriculture increases yields in Africa.
In terms of the average crop yield, organic agriculture demonstrated a “116 per cent increase for all African projects and a 128 per cent increase for the projects in East Africa”, according to the report.
It states that organic production is “equal or better than most conventional systems and more likely to be sustainable in the longer term”, and that growing demand for organic produce offers “significant income possibilities for African organic farmers”.
The report equally notes that despite the introduction of conventional agriculture in Africa, per capita food production is now 10 per cent lower than in the 1960s.
Andre Leu, chair of the Organic Federation of Australia, suggested that the results of the report could become even more important in the future. “Best practice organic agriculture can get better yields than conventional agriculture," he said. "Four recent credible studies show organic systems producing higher yields, particularly in the drier years that are predicted to increase with climate change.”