A non-profit organisation, Save Soil Movement says South Africa needs to urgently put in place measures that can improve the soil conditions. This emerged during the Walking-To-Save-Soil campaign held in Mahikeng in the North West.
Save Soil Movement ambassador, Tseke Nkadimeng, is currently undertaking a 10 000 km walk across the country to catch the attention of curious passersby. This, with the aim of educating them about the current condition of the soil.
He says food currently produced in backyard gardens as well as on large scale farms, is not organic enough. “Most of the farms that we visited across the country, we did ask them their organic content and it’s sitting around 0.2-0.3%. That means that for them to produce whatever they are planting, they have to add more nutrients, more chemicals, to make the to make the plants and everything else to be strong,” Nkadimeng elaborates.
He says the current soil condition in SA is below the minimum levels of organic quality.
Nkadimeng adds that urgent measures need to be put in place to improve the state of the soil to ensure that food produced locally is naturally healthy.
“We are asking the citizens to speak to their leadership in the farming/government and business sector. To says let’s invest our resources in turning the soil around and creating that policy. To say let’s create a target and say maybe in the next 10 years let’s have 3% organic content in the soil. To do that, it means, maybe for South Africa, we need to plant 50-million trees.”
Some residents of Mahikeng, young and old, joined the walk. They believe the initiative is important.
“We decided to be part of the Save Soil Campaign to raise awareness about the deteriorating quality of soil which will then affect our quality of farming and of course have an impact on our food security,” says a resident.
“When we look at the food that we are eating these days, most of the foods are done artificially. So, if we can raise awareness, we should try to plant our food organically,” adds another resident.
“We want to show the world that even people with disabilities can take part in any activity around the community or around the world,” another resident says.
Nkadimeng has already walked more than 6 000 km across South Africa — having taken the walk in places including Mpumalanga, Bloemfontein and Cape Town. He is expected to conclude the 250 days of the walk in Pretoria in April.
SA needs to urgently improve the condition of soil: Save Soil movement: