A micro farm is a proposed solution to world hunger and poverty. It combines modern day agricultural knowledge with ancient knowledge to design a farm to help a family gain food security and income.
The Micro Farms Project is initiated by the International Institute of Simplified Hydroponics an international NGO with the mission of bringing this technology to those in need.
Design Criteria are:
- Use one hectare of land, now degraded or not utilized for intensive farming
- Design a plan of production that provides family food security and family income
- Use only human labor and animal labor only if the animal is rented or has food on the site
- Use a minimum of nitrogen based fertilizers or external fertilizers on the crops
- Use no chemical based pesticides or herbicides
- Use human manures only for non edible plant products
The Micro Farm must be designed in such a way that reduces the use of non renewable products and increases the use of renewable ones.
For example, the home on the micro farm should be designed so it can be built in stages, and each of the components should use materials that are renewable.
An example of a renewable material would be bamboo. In the area of Sierra bamboo grows naturally and in the next door state of Vera Cruz, bamboo is a
commercial product. Structural bamboo is available.
If wood is used to heat the home and cook food then the farm should have in its structure a product that can be burned for these purposes.
Raanan´s design criteria
- A project intended towards the the rural poor especially women and children.
- Introducing appropriate knowledge and technology.
- From subsistence into versified farming towards market tended farming.
- Producing for special market demands
- Increasing income of farmers
- Increasing level of living of farmers.
- Achieving food security
- Achieving targets through participation.
- Achieving a sound society.
- Working with all the family
- Introducing efficient agriculture extension systems and methods.
- Introducing regional agricultural research support.
- Cooperation between farmers, agricultural extension, and research to
establish regional agricultural R&D projects
- Revealing within the society social and professional leaders ..
- Avoiding the urbanization process.
- Incorporation of agricultural traditional and advanced method.
- Combating desertification
The Microfarm project will be based on the following principles:
- Soil Conservation
- Maintaining soil fertility
- Sustainable management of water resources.
- Saving water irrigation methods like drip irrigation.
- Organic agriculture
- Green manure
- Compost preparation and use.
- Integrated Pest Management (IPM).
- Minimising the use of pesticide
- Taking advantage of climate conditions ( green houses).
- Fish culture
- Small ruminants like sheep and goat
- Market studies to improve marketing
- Bees and honey production
- Grazing without increasing animal husbandry pressure to maintain
International agreements have determined the definitions of sustainability.