Bhutan, Thailand and FAO to collaborate in soil initiatives

Rome, 22  June – FAO Director General José Graziano da Silva  discussed soil and water issues with  Dasho Sherab Gyaltshen, the Secretary for Ministry of Agriculture and Forests, Bhutan at the 38th Session of FAO Conference.

FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva  with Dasho Sherab Gyaltshen
FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva with Dasho Sherab Gyaltshen

Expansion of urban areas is rapidly eroding Bhutan’s already limited resources of arable land (7 percent of total geographical area), with fertile valley soils being lost to housing and shopping complexes, the Dasho Secretary said.

He spoke of the collaboration between his country, Thailand and FAO in the Global Soil Initiative and in the International Year of Soils. Regarding water scarcity, the Director-General suggested investigating alternative food crops such as quinoa, a native Andean crop, which requires around 100 times less water than rice. Arrangements will be made for Bhutan to receive some quinoa seeds.

Please click here for video interview of the meeting: http://www.fao.org/about/who-we-are/director-gen/faodg-news-archive/detail/en/c/178773/

 

-Submitted by PPD

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