Cash Waqf Contributes to Building Food Sovereignty for the Community

As an agricultural country, Indonesia should be able to have food sovereignty. Sadly, this is still a long way off if we look at the condition of our agriculture. For this reason, Global Wakaf-ACT supports the efforts to build food sovereignty with the support of waqf funds.

Farmers in Jiyu Village, Mojokerto during the Planting Ceremony that Global Wakaf held is in their village. (ACTNews / Eko Ramdani)

ACTNews, MOJOKERTO – Most Indonesians don’t know much about waqf except that it manifests in three forms: schools, mosques, or cemeteries. Though these three are the most common, there are other manifestations of productive waqf whose result can benefit the wider community.

For the last few years, Global Wakaf – ACT has been campaigning for productive waqf through the utilization of cash waqf. Part of this campaign is to hold several programs, including the Productive Rice Field Waqf that was officially launched at the end of 2020 in Mojokerto.

"In this first phase, we will plant superior rice seeds in 500 hectares of rice field as part of an effort to build this nation’s food sovereignty,” said Sri Eddy Kuncoro from Global Wakaf - ACT at the end of December 2020 during the Planting Ceremony in Jiyu Village, Kutorejo District, Mojokerto.

The planting Ceremony, which involves farmer groups, agricultural experts, Islamic boarding schools, and waqf donors, is the first stage of the Productive Rice Field Waqf that is projected to be harvested in the next few months. The rice produced by the rice field will not be used. Rather, it will be distributed to the poor, disaster victims, and Islamic boarding schools throughout East Java. It will first be stored at the Wakaf Distribution Center that is located in Jombang. This storehouse is capable of holding up to 500 tons of rice. This Wakaf Distribution Center itself was funded also by waqf.

Previously, similar Planting Ceremony was also held in Malang Regency in November 2020. The seeds that were planted were also developed by Hariyadi, an expert in agriculture.

"Indonesia is an agricultural country, so it should have food sovereignty. At this initial stage, we begin from East Java region. In the future, we will activate similar Productive Rice Field Waqf in other regions in Indonesia by maximizing the huge potential of waqf," added Eddy.

According to Indonesian Waqf Agency as reported by Kompas.com, the potential for waqf assets per year in Indonesia reaches IDR 2,000 trillion, with the potential waqf land area of ​​420 thousand hectares. In addition, the potential for cash waqf exceeds IDR 188 trillion per year. Unfortunately, this great potential has only been partially explored due to the lack of literacy about waqf in the community. []