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Why Bali is a great place to lead change in agriculture practices

Fields in Jembrana, Bali (Photograph by Timothée Régis)

The popularity of Bali exponentially grew in the past 20 years. The tourism industry is one of the main sources of income for the island. Like Indonesia in general, however, a huge part of the population remains rural and lives from agriculture.

In the last few years Bali has seen more and more organic agriculture projects and initiatives. Since its creation, has constantly promoted sustainable practices in agriculture on the island and beyond.

Sustainability is not only a foreign concept brought ad-hoc to the indigenous population of Bali. Indeed, the core principles of sustainability and organic agriculture fit the teachings of the local culture. One of the main philosophic principles of Balinese Hinduism is called Tri Hita Karana.

Tri Hita Karana is a framework to reflect on the organization of the world and achieve harmony between its component. It divides the living into three main categories:

  • The plants, which have the power to grow.

  • The animals, which have the power to grow and move.

  • The human beings, which have the power to grow, move and think.

Within this framework, human beings, with their capacity to think and plan, bear the responsibility to care and to protect everything else that belongs to the living.

Transitioning to an agriculture without artificial chemicals, respecting soil and biodiversity, is in line with this basic principle of Balinese culture. That is why Bali, rich in its incredible biodiversity and ancient culture should lead the transition to a sustainable tomorrow.

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