Plague of Small-scale Farmers
As main food producer, farmers usually didn’t get the respect accordance to the important of foods toward human life. ask about impression of farmers, probably we will get the answer of farmers is poor, less knowledgeable, crude etc, all the negatives thing will come out. The pity of farmers is an continuously tragedy, both organic and especially non-organic farmers, both don’t have the bargain power of selection of plant types, selling price, input materials price etc, all was controlled by the market, Here is some common problem faced by the small-scale farmers.
1. Lack of support from government to small scale farmers
The insufficient support of government in term of technique, machinery and financial. Although government have their own bodies or private bodies that do research regarding agriculture and have a lots machinery, but the resource seem hard to reach in the hand of small farmer. A lots of farmer bare a high debt because they get the loan from private financial company and couldn’t pay it back.
2. Land title problem
Land is always an issues for farmers, ridiculous to say those who own the land don’s want to be a farmer and those who want to be a farmer usually not own the land. So, farmers just rent the land with the risk of the land will be taken back by landlord any time. Following the development in the urban area, the price of land hike up and farmers no longer able to farm in the land and being marginalize in this huge wave of development. Fragmentation of land also cause small farmers not able to use machinery because it not worth it.
3. Lack of systematic marketing network
I saw from Mr. Gopala farm, he just sell his product in a conventional market price although his product was organically grow. Small scale farms usually manage by a person, some with help from 1 or 2 family members, so the farmers usually have to do the farm works, administrative, finance, marketing at the same time. If there is a network that can help farmers to market their products in a fair price, then farmers will be able to concentrate more on the production and quality of the products.
4. Replacement of traditional and healthy farming practice by modern farming technique, farmers lost the bargain power
The so-called “Green Revolution” started in 1960, that promises better yield and better livelihood bring in more chemical to agriculture field. Until now, genetic modified technology is taking place to a higher state of farming technology that claim by chemical company is a solution for the world hungry. In fact, we started to see effect by excessive use of chemical, causing acidic compacted deadly soils, low salinity,river etc that give a huge impact to our live and environment. Farmers first feel the effect by the usage of chemical as the soil no longer suitable to support plants life, and the consumer also in the latter stage seen the rising case of disaster like cancer. This revolution also bring in the shift of food control and food distribution models, where the big company hold the biggest power to decide what to plant, how to plant, what to eat, where to eat, what the prices and so on.
5. Rise of production cost
Conventional farming is a series of technique require chemical to support life of plants, started from buying the treated seeds, follow with specific pesticides, herbicides, fungicide, chemical fertilizers to support the life of the plants. However, cost of chemical is keep rising but farmers usually have no bargain power to get a better selling price. Eventually, farmers bare more debt and they live poor than ever before.
8. Climate change that give effect on the vegetation
Farmers saw a change in climate clear than any others people, unusual and extensive drought in hot season, overflow of water in raining season, low water tablet, low salinity etc phenomena give harmful effect toward their vegetation.
7. Reluctant of conventional farmer to convert to organic
Many farmers although they knew the harmful of conventional farming dare not convert to organic farming, because fear of drop in the yield in the initial period. By the way, good result tend to be shown only after 3 years. No proper assistant, consultation and subsidies from government or related agencies cause no ways for conventional farmers to shift the farming practices .