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Beyond conservation agriculture [Electronic Resource]

By: GILLER, K.E.
Contributor(s): CORBEELS, M | Kirkegaard, J | Mortensen, D | Vanlauwe, B | Andersson, J.A | Erenstein, O.
Material type: materialTypeLabelArticlePublisher: Switzerland : Frontiers, 2015Subject(s): Erosion | Mulches | Legumes | Conservation agricultureOnline resources: Access only for CIMMYT Staff In: Frontiers in Plant Science v. 6, no. 870Summary: Global support for Conservation Agriculture (CA) as a pathway to Sustainable Intensification is strong. CA revolves around three principles: no-till (or minimal soil disturbance), soil cover, and crop rotation. The benefits arising from the ease of crop management, energy/cost/time savings, and soil and water conservation led to widespread adoption of CA, particularly on large farms in the Americas and Australia, where farmers harness the tools of modern science: highly-sophisticated machines, potent agrochemicals, and biotechnology. Over the past 10 years CA has been promoted among smallholder farmers in the (sub-) tropics, often with disappointing results. Growing evidence challenges the claims that CA increases crop yields and builds-up soil carbon although increased stability of crop yields in dry climates is evident. Our analyses suggest pragmatic adoption on larger mechanized farms, and limited uptake of CA by smallholder farmers in developing countries. We propose a rigorous, context-sensitive approach based on Systems Agronomy to analyze and explore sustainable intensification options, including the potential of CA. There is an urgent need to move beyond dogma and prescriptive approaches to provide soil and crop management options for farmers to enable the Sustainable Intensification of agriculture.
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Article CIMMYT Knowledge Center: John Woolston Library

Lic. Jose Juan Caballero Flores

 

CIMMYT Staff Publications Collection Available
Total holds: 0

Open Access

Peer review

Global support for Conservation Agriculture (CA) as a pathway to Sustainable Intensification is strong. CA revolves around three principles: no-till (or minimal soil disturbance), soil cover, and crop rotation. The benefits arising from the ease of crop management, energy/cost/time savings, and soil and water conservation led to widespread adoption of CA, particularly on large farms in the Americas and Australia, where farmers harness the tools of modern science: highly-sophisticated machines, potent agrochemicals, and biotechnology. Over the past 10 years CA has been promoted among smallholder farmers in the (sub-) tropics, often with disappointing results. Growing evidence challenges the claims that CA increases crop yields and builds-up soil carbon although increased stability of crop yields in dry climates is evident. Our analyses suggest pragmatic adoption on larger mechanized farms, and limited uptake of CA by smallholder farmers in developing countries. We propose a rigorous, context-sensitive approach based on Systems Agronomy to analyze and explore sustainable intensification options, including the potential of CA. There is an urgent need to move beyond dogma and prescriptive approaches to provide soil and crop management options for farmers to enable the Sustainable Intensification of agriculture.

Maize CRP FP1 - Sustainable intensification of maize-based farming systems FP4 - Alignment with and strengthening maize seed systems for effective product delivery

Wheat CRP FP1 - Maximizing value for money, social inclusivity through prioritizing WHEAT R4D investments FP4 - Sustainable intensification of wheat - based cropping systems

Conservation Agriculture Program

Socioeconomics Program

Text in english

CIMMYT Informa No. 1955

INT3362

INT2677

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