With an onset of partnership program between Organic Denmark and Royal Society for Protection of Nature in August this year, a long standing effort by the two organisations to initiate a formal tie in organic agriculture finally became a reality. A team from Organic Denmark comprising of Mr. Per Rasmussen, Organic agriculture expert, Mr. Jesper Saxgren, Vice Chairman of Global Organic Committee in Organic Denmark and Mr. Tsewang Lhundup visited RSPN from 25th October to 1st November 2016. Organic Denmark (www.organicdenmark.com) is inspired by Bhutan’s Vision of becoming 100 percent organic by 2020.
The partnership program seeks to strengthen the relation and understanding between the two organisations; to initiate dialogue on long term collaboration and to enhance understanding of the two organisations in agricultural practices and scenario in the two countries. Beside meetings with relevant partners and stakeholders, the Organic Denmark‘s programme in Bhutan included field visit to Baeyull Kuenzang one of the potential sites identified for organic agriculture project. Baeyul Kuenzang is a remote village under Bongo gewog in Chukha district with only about 56 households. The village does not have road network and is accessible by a narrow footpath which entails about four hours of walk from the nearest road head at Jimichhu. At Baeyul Kuenzang, the team met with 35 local community members to understand farming practices, issues, needs and opportunities in the area.
The team also had opportunity to visit farms and households and have informal interactions with farmers. The visit concluded with fruitful dialogue on long term future collaboration between Organic Denmark and RSPN in the areas of organic agriculture. While accessibility is a problem, Baeyul Kuenzang is observed to have immense potential for organic farming and agriculture in general.
This visit was preceded by similar visit to Denmark by RSPN team in August this year. During the visit, RSPN team visited several areas in Denmark showcasing Organic Denmark’s initiatives. The team also had the opportunity to meet the stakeholders of Organic Denmark comprising of farmers, companies and individuals. This preparatory phase program will end by March 2017. RSPN and Organic Denmark intends to further this effort to establish a long-term collaboration in organic agriculture.
Organic Denmark (Økologisk Landsforening) is an association of companies, organic farmers and consumers in Denmark. It has more than 160 member companies and is considered the largest representative of the organic food industry in Denmark.
Photo Credits : Tshewang Lhundup, Organic Denmark and Tshering Phuntsho, RSPN