Food self-sufficiency at household level: In the context of crisis situations involving confinement/ social distancing or food shortages, it is essential that households can produce the required minimum of fresh vegetables to supplement available cereal and canned food rations. This partial food self-sufficiency is all the more important in the long-run given that Mauritius only produces a fifth of the national need and that locally grown fruits and vegetables are often of poor quality due to the overuse of chemical inputs.
Avoidance of social contacts (in periods of lock-down): In addition to the food self-sufficiency, the rooftop or small garden cultivation as a substitute or complement to external cultivated plots of lands will help its users avoid or significantly reduce the need to go out and buy fresh products. This will help improve our social distancing strategies in periods of crisis.
Improvement of health: Given the increase in household production, people will be able to consume the required amount of fruits and vegetables (100 g per adult per day). The intake of quality fresh produce, leafy vegetables, fruit, salads, seeds, etc. significantly improves people's health. Better health, due to the intake of vitamins and fibre fr om products which do not contain chemical residues will lead to better resistance to viruses and pathogens in general.
Introducing simple agroecological know-how: The ability of smallholders in Mauritius to move from horticulture with high chemical inputs to a more organic and sustainable practice depends on the availability of organic inputs, reproducible native seeds, biofertilizers, biological phytosanitary treatments, and the acquisition of know-how in terms of crop rotation, plant care, use of ecological greenhouses. Beyond the objectives of food autonomy, avoiding social contacts and improving consumer health, it is also a question of "sowing" in households the seeds of know-how that can only be learned on the field, in this case on the roof, but which can be replicated on larger surface areas in open fields . But many of small planters also have houses with a rooftops or small garden and even if they do not equip themselves with our kit, one of their neighbours or relatives will do so and the information will circulate.
Lim it the proportion of organic waste to be collected: With organic waste removed from a household’s general waste, the latter will only consist of a small amount of non-compostable papers and cardboard, plastic or glass boxes, bottles and household dust. The resulting bin with its "clean and dry" contents can easily be kept at home for a week or more, which reduces the need for high frequency waste collection and improves treatment by landfilling. In lock-down situation, the less the need for transport and handling of waste, the better. Finally, it is well known that a landfill site with a large amount of biodegradable waste and reduced staff can quickly become a source of viral and bacterial concentration and the starting point for dispersal by insects, birds and rodents.