With its unique culture and natural sweeping landscape, Sikkim is easily synonymous with perfection and pristine purity. Nestled in the Himalayas, this little state has been on a roll and how! Recently it got its own airport and now it’s been given accolades for being the most organic state not just in India, but the world!
This gorgeous northeastern state beat top 51 global cities and bagged the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation’s Future Policy Award 2018. The award lauds Sikkim on being an outstanding example on how to successfully transform the food system and ensure respect for people and planet. The Silver award was shared by Brazil, Denmark and Quito in Ecuador because they too, to a great extent, have imbibed techniques of chemical-free farming.
Sikkim is home to bio-villages that employ effective microorganisms (EM) technology for compost and bio-pesticides; agricultural fields use vermi-culture hatcheries and compost-cum-urine pits for manure production; and even the seeds they use are organic, rather than the hybrids that are used in other parts of the country; and most importantly, in order to ensure that those seeds yield maximum output, the state conducts regular soil health assessments.
Sikkim’s organic farming has benefited over 66,000 family farmers, going beyond just organic production to being inclusive and comprehensive in its socioeconomic aspects such as consumption and market expansion, rural develoment and sustainable tourism.
The award nicknamed ‘Oscar for best policies’, is a special award recognising the world’s best laws and policies promoting agroecology. And Sikkim seems to understand fully the importance of not carrying out any kind of development work and business at the cost of the environment.
In fact, Sikkim’s story is a model example of sustainability that is currently being emulated in other northeastern states of the country and down south in Kerala, who recently faced extensive floods as a result of unsustainable development amplified by climate change.