23 May 2017, Thimphu: A two-day National Workshop on Roadmap for Organic Agriculture Policy in Bhutan began yesterday and will go on till today 23rd May 2017. The second level of consultations has been organised by the NOP and is being held at the City Hotel, Thimphu. The objective of the workshop is to present the initial findings from the assessment, and to seek everyone’s ideas and contributions before finalising the draft report detailing the findings and sharing the draft widely including on the websites of MOAF for further input from the public, so that eventually it will have a strong and well consulted and assessed strategy to support the development organic farming in Bhutan. The event is being graced by the Hon’ble minister of the Agriculture and Forests, Lyonpo Yeshey Dorji.
The National Organic Programme (NOP) of the Department of Agriculture (DoA), Ministry of Agriculture and Forest (MoAF), Bhutan, supported by ICIMOD is currently in the process of assessing the potential and challenges for Organic Agriculture in Bhutan, with the objective of supporting the development of mountain rural livelihoods in the context of socio-economic and climate change. This activity builds on the work already conducted by the National Organic Programme, DoA, MoAF of Bhutan, as well as on the pilots conducted by ICIMOD’s Rural Livelihoods and Climate Change Adaptation in the Himalayas – Himalica, a demand-driven programme financed by the European Union and managed by ICIMOD. Himalica aims to support vulnerable mountain communities in the HKH region to adapt to climate and socio-economic change in selected sites in Bhutan.
In line with Government of Bhutan’s endeavours to promote organic agriculture, the objective of this assignment is to assess the potential impact of Bhutan’s stated vision of going 100% organic, and its possible impacts on i) environment, ii) economy iii) social development of the country in the short, medium, and long term; and also,iv) to assess the opportunities and challenges for Organic Agriculture as a source of livelihood for local people in Bhutan (including ICIMOD’s pilot sites). The assessment is expected serve as a basis for a consultative process in the country that may eventually lead to the formulation of a mountain-specific organic agriculture policy for Bhutan. The first level of national stakeholder consultations was completed in March 2017 lead by two consultants, Sunder Subramanian and Mr. Sherub Gyaltshen involved extensive consultations both in Thimphu and around the country.
The workshop concludes today.
– NOP, DOA
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