Newsletter Volume 36 – May 2024

WELCOME TO ORGANIC EGYPT NEWSLETTER! 

Volume 36

Dear Reader, 

This is volume number 36 of Organic Egypt project newsletter. It reviews our activities in May 2024 and illustrates all interventions conducted with our partners, the Integral Development Action of Minia (IDAM) and the Egyptian Biodynamic Association (EBDA).

We hope you enjoy the read!


TRAININGS AND WORKSHOPS FOR PARTNER ASSOCIATION

Training on Organic Pest Control for Vegetable Crops

Organic Egypt conducted a two-day training for the partner association IDAM on organic pest management techniques for various vegetable crops. On the first day of the training, the lecturer focused on the pest control strategy under the organic farming system, the harmful effects of using pesticides on human health and the environment, and the role of pheromones in pest control. The second day, the lecturer delved into identifying common pests in vegetable crops and the methods of organic pest management, such as legislative control (Agricultural quarantine rules for imported products), mechanical control, biological control, and cultural control. The training also included practical demonstrations on how to implement these techniques effectively in the field, ensuring sustainable and eco-friendly pest management practices for vegetable crops.

NEW INNOVATIVE SERVICES OF OUR PARTNER ASSOCIATIONS

Construction of a Learning Center for Biodynamic Preparations

Our partner association, EBDA, with the support of the Organic Egypt project, celebrated the inauguration of the biodynamic preparation center. The center aims to bring all the activities of composting, animal husbandry, and biodynamic preparations to the same place as well as host training sessions and workshops for students, engineers, farmers, and interested individuals on biodynamic preparations. The center will convey all the necessary knowledge of the benefits and techniques of biodynamic farming and will provide a destination for education and practical application. Additionally, it is the first biodynamic preparation center in Egypt, making it a pioneering initiative in the country's agricultural sector.

Cooperation between India and Egypt in adopting Natural Farming Method

Organic Egypt, with the partner association EBDA, traveled to Bangalore, India, to exchange knowledge on natural farming methods and explore how the natural farming approach can be adopted in the Egyptian context. The natural farming method uses inputs that are usually on the farm, so the expense of agricultural inputs for the farmers are minimized. Additionally, natural farming enhances soil fertility and makes it more resilient to climate change and drought conditions. This was the driving force behind implementing this trial in the first place, therefore, four field trials were established on EBDA member farms, where natural farming practices will be tested. The crops chosen are

corn, sesame, moringa, and mixed vegetables such as tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers, all of which are commonly grown in Egypt. The tests will be conducted during the upcoming summer season, and the results will be disseminated to the members of our partner associations.


TRAINING AND LEARING MATERIAL CREATED WITH OUR PARTNERS

Recipe Videos for consumer awareness

Organic Egypt, in cooperation with RDNA Food Store, is producing recipe videos to raise awareness about natural, local, and organic food. This May, RDNA focused on a recipe to celebrate the spring season by creating a delicious salad using "Renga", which is a salted and smoked fish that is served with different vegetables such as cucumbers, tomatoes, and bell peppers, and considered a popular addition for spring celebrations in Egypt. Furthermore, this month, RDNA made two different recipes known as "Mushroom Series," featuring locally organic mushrooms in innovative and delicious ways. The recipes named "Mushroom Steak" and " Fried Lion's Mane Mushroom" showcase the diversity and flavor of mushrooms as a healthy source of protein. These recipe videos aim to inspire viewers to incorporate more natural and organic foods into their diets for a healthier lifestyle.

EDUCATIONAL AND AWARENESS RAISING CAMPAIGNS

Consumer Excursion

Consumer excursions are designed to bring consumers closer to farmers and producers. The excursion this May was organized at Tabi3y Farm on the Mansoria, Abu Rawash Road in Giza Governorate. The farm has organic vegetables and fruits, and visitors had the opportunity to learn about the cultivation process and interact with the farmers. The programme of the excursion included a guided tour of the farm, harvesting crops and plants using farm tools, and a traditional Egyptian breakfast made with fresh ingredients from the farm. Overall, the excursion provided a unique and educational experience for consumers interested in sustainable agriculture practices and organic farming in Egypt.

Farmers and Processors Market

Organic Egypt, in cooperation with RDNA, implements farmers and processors markets in an open space at KMT House, Maadi, in Cairo. This month's market was dedicated to “Sham El-Nessim” is a national holiday for the spring celebration that aims to connect people together in harmony with nature. The market provided a platform for local farmers and producers to showcase their organic products, while celebrating Sham El-Nessim holidays and the arrival of spring. This market also highlighted the importance of supporting youth with different products, such as body care with natural ingredients, handmade bags, olive oils, and other locally sourced goods. The event also features live music, food vendors, and workshops.

NETWORKING ACTIVITIES OF ORGANIC EGYPT PROJECT AND PARTNER

The African Biodynamic Conference

Organic Egypt team participated and supported the implementation of the first African biodynamic conference this May 2024, in Egypt. The three day conference was hosted by the partner association EBDA, where 150 participants from all over Africa (Tanzania, Kenya, Namibia, Gambia, Uganda, Togo and South Africa), North Africa (Tunisia, Morocco) and Europe (Germany, Switzerland) participated. The conference focused on three different themes: "Ecology," "Education," and "Economy." The aim was to promote biodynamic agriculture as a sustainable and holistic approach to bring ecological balance to farming practices while also improving productivity and farmers income and awareness. The conference was a great opportunity for sharing knowledge, building networks, and fostering collaboration among stakeholders in the agricultural sector. On the last day of the conference, all the participants were involved in a workshop on how to tackle the climatic challenges through cooperation between all African stakeholders.