23 min

Did organic farming cause Sri Lanka’s collapse‪?‬ The Inquiry

    • News

Sri Lanka is now in the worst economic crisis they have seen in decades, schools are closed, fuel is in short supply, there are power cuts and a shortage of food. The President has been forced to resign and the political future of the country is uncertain.

But can the current problems be traced back to a decision to take the country’s food production completely organic?

In 2021 the President of Sri Lanka announced a total ban on chemical fertilizer and pesticides. Health concerns were given as a reason, but in the background was the pandemic, loss of tourism and a lack of natural fertilizer available in the country.

After protests the ban on chemical fertilizer was reversed, but had it already caused too much damage?

This week on The Inquiry we ask, did organic farming cause Sri Lanka’s collapse?

Presenter: Charmaine Cozier
Producer: Louise Clarke-Rowbotham
Researcher: Christopher Blake
Technical Producer: Richard Hannaford

(Anti government protesters invade the president's office in Colombo, Sri Lanka. 9 July 22 Credit: Tharaka Basnayaka /Getty Images)

Sri Lanka is now in the worst economic crisis they have seen in decades, schools are closed, fuel is in short supply, there are power cuts and a shortage of food. The President has been forced to resign and the political future of the country is uncertain.

But can the current problems be traced back to a decision to take the country’s food production completely organic?

In 2021 the President of Sri Lanka announced a total ban on chemical fertilizer and pesticides. Health concerns were given as a reason, but in the background was the pandemic, loss of tourism and a lack of natural fertilizer available in the country.

After protests the ban on chemical fertilizer was reversed, but had it already caused too much damage?

This week on The Inquiry we ask, did organic farming cause Sri Lanka’s collapse?

Presenter: Charmaine Cozier
Producer: Louise Clarke-Rowbotham
Researcher: Christopher Blake
Technical Producer: Richard Hannaford

(Anti government protesters invade the president's office in Colombo, Sri Lanka. 9 July 22 Credit: Tharaka Basnayaka /Getty Images)

23 min

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