It is planning to start its bio-compost through community mobilization.
Pakistan to tackle the locust crisis by converting it into an opportunity. For this, it will start incentivizing the locust collection at the community level. Thus, the Ministry of National Food Security and Research (NFS&R) has proposed community mobilization to control locust at grass root level.
NFS&R will be the pioneer in converting locust crisis into opportunity by starting through developing its bio-compost through community mobilization. The locust-based fertilizer will have added advantage of more N (9%) and P (7%).
Initially locust will be unruffled through community mobilization under incentivized scheme. There will be involvement of professionals from research, extension, academia and civil society in compost processing activities. Later on, there will be development of standard compost from a mix of locust and other bio-waste material.
Marketing and distribution mechanism will also be devised for promoting the use of compost in high value/organic agriculture. The pilot testing of whole idea will be in Cholistan and Thar Desert during next 3-4 summer reproduction months.
Capacity building of communities will develop in trapping locust (trenching, netting, vacuum sucking etc.). 50 collection centers will be designated to facilitate communities. Arid zone Centers/Institutes of PARC Bahawalpur (29), Tharparkar/Umerkot (42), Lakki Marwat/DI Khan (41) will be involved in implementation of the project.
Human resources available at different institutes Kharan Dryland Center of Balochistan (27) and Agriculture Research Institutes of PARC at Turbat (12), Lasbella (23) & Khuzdar (26) will be involved in execution of the project.
Labs of Land Resources Research Institute (LRRI) and Ecotoxicology Program of PARC will provide scientific backup for the production of standard compost. PARC Agrotech Company (PATCO) in partnership with private sector will perform labelling, packaging, promotion; marketing and branding functions at national level.
Expectation of Project Outcomes
Moreover, the promotion of these certified compost products will be for export purposes. The expected outcomes from the project will be to improve crop productivity by 10-15%, reduction in use of recommended chemical fertilizers up to 25%, improve soil organic matter (SOM), soil fertility and soil health.
Through this scheme, organic farming will be promoted in Pakistan. The facility developed for compost production will be functional with or without locust component in the long run.
The initial production of the compost will be worth Rs. 1 billion during 1st year of the project. Moreover, if they can control 1% of crop loss by this project then there will be benefit of Rs.32 billion.
Further, out of 1 hundred thousand ton of locusts, formation of 70,000 ton compost is possible. Moreover, a single family can earn Rs.6000 on average per month. Interestingly, the full cost of the project will be recovered in 3 years. Payment to community will be channelized in proper way. The project is in approval stage.