National Geographic : 2015 Aug
country’s third largest export after coffee and tea, and more than 30,000 farmers now cultivate chrysanthemums. In the past, although they exported pyrethrum, Rwandans generally treated their own crops with cheaper, imported synthetic pesticides that had sometimes been banned in developed countries. That may be changing. The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization has sponsored training on sustainability and pesticide use, and the firm Agropharm Africa is developing more pyrethrum-based products that Rwandan farmers can use locally as well as market globally. “Not only is this use more sustainable for the country,” says Agropharm Africa’s general manager, Therese Karitanyi, “it is simply better for our health and for our environment.” —Catherine Zuckerman Pyrethrum is a natural insec- ticide derived from certain types of chrysanthemums. Above, villagers tend the crop in northern Rwanda.