MATSUYAMA, Ehime Pref. (Kyodo) Masanobu Fukuoka, the pioneer of “natural” farming, which eschews plowing, weeding and fertilizers or pesticides, died of natural causes at his home in Iyo, Ehime Prefecture, on Saturday, his family said. He was 95.

Fukuoka was the author of “The One Straw Revolution,” a book that has been translated into English, Korean, Thai and several other languages. He received the Deshikottam Award, India’s most prestigious award, and the Philippines’ Ramon Magsaysay award for public service, both in 1988.

After attending an agricultural college in Gifu Prefecture and working at the customs office in Yokohama and an agricultural laboratory in Kochi Prefecture, Fukuoka returned to his native Ehime Prefecture to practice the natural farming method that does not require artificial fertilizers or pesticides and goes beyond organic farming.

He advocated natural farming in various parts of Asia and Africa.

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