Description of Challenge
In Cameroon many small communities and rural areas still make use of unimproved agricultural practices like subsistence farming on same plot of land without replenishing the topsoil. With the lack of good seeds, the crops planted do not do well and thus do not yield enough money to feed families. Many of the seeds which are preserved for the farming season are poorly preserved and end up either getting bad or are eaten up by insects and other animals.
To ensure that food security is maintained and food sovereignty is ensured, it is necessary for communities and local farmers to improve their seed preserving methods. One such way is by making use of a long standing tradition in the Bafut community of Cameroon, where farmers use a Calabash to store seeds for future planting seasons. This method has proven very efficient, as historical records show that seeds preserved in calabashes could easily be stored for many years and were safe from insects, due to the calabash’s hard exterior. This method is equally very advantageous as it allows for farmers to posses personal seed banks which could go a long way in serving for other farmers, in the event that these farmers don’t have seeds for one reason or the other. The calabash can equally be used for various storage purposes such as storing water and other foods, thus making it a natural and efficient method for general preservation.
Submitted by: Herman