Promotion of environmentally friendly agriculture in Korea
In the recently concluded “International Training Course on Smart Use of Fertilizers to Improve Crop Production and Conservation,” Dr. Chang Gil Kim, Director, Research Planning and Coordination Division of the Korea Rural Economic Institute (KREI) delivered a lecture on how his country addressed the environmental issues as it relates to agriculture and the continuing challenges that are currently faced by members of Korea’s agricultural community.
According to Dr. Kim, Korea’s policy on increasing food production, being its core agricultural policy, supports its large population living on limited lands as well as its goal of increasing the farm household income.
Combination of policies
There have been at least eight projects drafted to ensure that an environmentally friendly agriculture exists and is continuously sustained in Korea. These are the following:
The eco-friendly agriculture base establishment project supports the farmers or producer organizations who want to create a district for eco-friendly agriculture in the region. On the other hand, the latter is a project that circulates eco-friendly agri complex resources in wide area units in connection with cultivation and livestock businesses in a city.
The direct payment system for eco-friendly farming was drafted in accordance with the Environmentally Friendly Agriculture Promotion Act, wherein cooperative units or farmers whose produce are certified as environmentally friendly agricultural products are eligible for direct payment, which is made for five years.
On the other hand, the biological disease and harmful insect prevention project aims to reduce the use of pesticides and produce high quality safe agri products by converting insect prevention using synthetic pesticides on enclosed horticulture crops to biological insect prevention methods using natural enemies.
The eco-friendly fertilizer support project is divided into the organic fertilizer support and the soil conditioner assistance project. The former promotes resource recovery through the recycling of by products from agriculture, forestry and the livestock industry. The latter aims to improve acidic and farmland soil with a low effective silicic acid content through the input of soil conditioners such as lime and silicic acid. It also aims to create the basis for maintaining and preserving soil fertility.
The green manure Crop Seeds Cost Support Project aims to increase the organic matter content in soil by cultivating green manure crops in fallow farmland and return it to the soil in order to promote soil fertility and maintain and preserve agri-environmental practices.
The eco-friendly agricultural products distribution activation and consumption promotion is an expansion of specialized sales corners for agri products development.
The agricultural water quality improvement project aims to establish a clean water supply base and create a pleasant living environment for rural areas through water quality improvement measures and the deposition of sediments in lakes and marshes to improve reservoirs and fresh water lakes.
The policy objective of the livestock manure treatment support project is to foster eco-friendly livestock industries through resource and energy recovery.
Dr. Kim concluded his lecture by saying that in order to make healthy eco-friendly agriculture a reality, systematic agri-environmental resources management needs to be done. Similarly, for agri environmental resources management system to be centered around the users, tailored optimum management methods by area should be prepared and a cooperative system complete with distribution of roles should be established.
Dr. Chang Gil Kim, Director, Research Planning and Coordination division of the Korea Rural Economic Institute (KREI) talks about how the Korean Government addressed environmental issues as it relates to agriculture.
Korean farmers whose produce are certified are eligible for direct payment, which is made for five years.