The government will promote a new agricultural paradigm with the goal of transforming Taiwan’s agriculture and expanding the organic farming industry, Premier Lin Chuan said during a visit today to the Haifeng organic cultivation area in Pingtung County.
Agricultural reform is high on President Tsai Ing-wen’s policy agenda, the premier said. To revitalize Taiwan’s farming communities, the government has mapped out plans to acquire land and capital as well as to increase young people’s involvement. There are 6,600 hectares of organically certified farmland in Taiwan currently, a figure that Lin hopes will climb to 10,000 by the end of 2017.
The premier also commended Pingtung County for using organic ingredients in student school lunches, adding that the county has set a good example by providing organic lunches at least once a week. Eleven cities and counties across the nation have adopted similar practices, laying a sturdy foundation for the development of organic farming in Taiwan.
According to the Council of Agriculture, 11 farmers and 11 hectares of land at the Haifeng organic cultivation area have been certified, primarily for the production of organic fruits and vegetables. To put business on a sounder footing, the Pingtung County Government has designated the county’s vegetable and fruit cooperative to manage the cultivation area, guiding organic farmers on pest control and organic certification and providing them with a range of marketing channels.
The cooperative has also been providing around five metric tons of vegetables per week to elementary and junior high schools in compliance with the county’s organic school lunch program.