Rwandan Farmers Educated on Manure Benefits for Soil and Environmental Conservation

Farmers from various districts in Rwanda have reported that incorporating manure into their agricultural practices significantly benefits environmental conservation.

These insights were shared on May 16, 2024, during a ceremony recognizing farmers who have excelled in sustainable agriculture.

Mukamurara Kajabo Théodette, a farmer from Bugesera District in Ntarama Sector, cultivates vegetables, peanuts, beans, and maize. She attributes the environmental benefits of manure to the specific types of plants it comprises. “Manure includes various plants that do not harm insects, which are integral to the ecosystem, nor do they damage intercropped trees,” she explained. “These plants are bitter to insects, so when they land on the crops, they sense the bitterness or smell and flee. This ensures the insects’ survival and prevents crop damage.”

Munyemanzi Frodouard from Musanze District in Gataraga Sector, who grows potatoes, maize, wheat, beans, and onions, noted that manure use contributes to environmental protection. He observed, “The crops I cultivate using manure are of superior quality and do not harm the environment.”

He elaborated, “This sustainable farming practice supports the survival of earthworms, bees, and humans, as we are also part of the environment. Industrial chemicals are pollutants, but traditional methods, like using manure, do not cause environmental damage.”

Matabaro David from Ruhango District in Ruhango Sector, who grows tomatoes, cassava, and other crops, practices biodiversity-friendly farming. He remarked, “I use plant-derived manure, a method that conserves biodiversity while safeguarding the environment. I dig pits to compost plant matter, dung, and ashes. This approach supports the cultivation of leafy greens, tomatoes, cassava, and maize.”

Vuningoma Faustin, the coordinator of the Rwandan Coalition for the Conservation of the Environment and Climate Change (RCCDN), emphasized that manure enhances soil quality by improving water retention, thereby protecting the environment. He stated, “Using manure is crucial for environmental conservation and combating climate change, as it reduces greenhouse gas emissions.”

Eco-friendly farming practices are expected to yield organic crops without relying on chemical fertilizers, as manure maintains soil health and mitigates climate change impacts.