Gains to Punjab’s cotton farmers

To help Pakistani cotton farmers in Punjab reduce pesticide use, cut input costs and improve crop yields, CropLife Pakistan has been reaching out to growers, partnering with the Agriculture Department in establishing farmer field schools in the region.

In 2008, 1,050 farmer field schools were set up across the region, offering training programs to 31,500 participants on reading and understanding instructions on product labels, correct transportation and secure storage of pesticides, safe handling and personal hygiene after spraying.

The partners’ program on responsible pesticide use was included in the Department’s Integrated Pest Management (IPM) project for farmers in 2008. In addition, local doctors were taught how to identify and react to suspected cases of pesticide-related incidents, such as recognizing initial symptoms. The program has been such a success that 78 percent of participants encouraged other farmers to sign up for training.

Visit www.croplifeasia.org to learn more about work towards sustainable agriculture across the Asia Pacific region.

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