A Sustainable Agriculture Can Be Achieved

A Sustainable Agriculture Can Be Achieved

  • Thursday, 30 May 2013 08:46
  • Written by Jorge Pérez Cruz

In recognition of his merits and productive potential, Julio was given 13.42 hectares in usufructAccording to the Oxfam human aid agency on its report Cultivar un Mundo Mejor (Growing a Better Future): “The 2005 drought, the 2008 crisis in food prices, the 2010 drought and in three years climate change, will push us to our second food crisis”.

The document analyzes the international food system imbalances and notes that basic food prices will double by 2030 unless governments take serious action.

In Cuba, the State issued Decree 259, which delivers land in usufruct to individuals interested in producing, and later Decree 300 which takes into account the strengths and weaknesses of its predecessor , as part of a strategy in search of sustainability and food self-sufficiency.


When Julio César Calzadilla Pérez finished tenth grade, he returned to his familiar roots, working the land with his father, back in the town of Boca in the municipality of Gibara, in eastern Cuba.

Together with Yennis, a beautiful and intelligent woman, agronomist by profession and a faithful defender of the soil, he finally settled in the province of Las Tunas, where his will and dedication have had positive results in areas of the Niceto Pérez Credit and Service Unit (CCS), very close to the city.

Later, he was a delegate to the 9th Congress of the Cuban Workers Federation and won the honorary title awarded by the National Association of Small Farmers (ANAP) and the condition of National Vanguard of the National Association of Agricultural and Forestry Workers. He was candidate for delegate to the 10th Congress of the ANAP.

In recognition of his merits and productive potential, he was given 13.42 hectares in usufruct in an area where the existence of water resources and soil fertility would predict new triumphs.

Julio and Yennis have delivered to the state different products for commercialization and direct supply to the population: guava, cabbage, milk, cassava, sweet potato, banana, tobacco, pepper…

“This year, my plan is to produce more than five thousand liters of milk to be sold directly to consumers and industry”, said Julio, who also talked about his purpose of delivering 0.5 tons of livestock meat, 100 tons of other meats, vegetables and grains, and 4 tons of tobacco by the end of the year.


Julio defends three inviolable principles to achieve a sustainable agriculture: “The producer needs to use everything, even harvest waste (compost for soil improvement) or beef manure (organic fertilizer) and pigs manure (substrate for poultry feed); also coal can be made from marabou, which is a source of income to purchase inputs: machetes, gloves, ropes, boots…”

And the other two?

“Producing 365 days a year. You need to sow crops that can be harvested at 60 or 70 days, to make sustainable investments and ensure not less than 70 percent of animal feed with your own efforts; and also relying on scientific and technical assistance from the projects of the University and institutions of the Agriculture Ministry (MINAGRI): on soil, plant health, veterinary, among others.”

These are the reasons for his optimism and confidence that sustainable agriculture can be achieved with effort and dedication, and with the help of hired workforce depending on the needs.



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