Download Agroecological Innovations : Increasing Food Production with by Norman Uphoff (Editor), Miguel Altieri, Marco Barzman PDF

By Norman Uphoff (Editor), Miguel Altieri, Marco Barzman

The world's foodstuff provide must upward thrust considerably, but either arable and water offers in step with capita are lowering. not just are sleek agricultural tools past the succeed in of these affliction the best foodstuff lack of confidence yet also they are ecologically harmful, depending upon fossil strength and chemical inputs. This quantity deals a suite of leading edge and various methods to agricultural improvement. Documented in 12 case reviews, those techniques are reliant upon higher wisdom, ability and labour enter, instead of greater capital expenditure. they're proven to extend yield considerably, occasionally doubling or tripling output. This quantity offers the ideas and operational capability for reorienting agricultural efforts in the direction of those extra environmentally pleasant and socially fascinating ways within the built in addition to constructing global.

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Not only should fixation on individual crops be avoided, but a broader understanding of the biophysical unit for agriculture is needed. A narrow focus on fields is giving way to a broader focus on landscapes and/or watersheds, within which fields function as interdependent units, especially as we gain a better agroecological understanding of agriculture (Conway, 1987; Carrol et al, 1990; Altieri, 1995). ASSUMPTIONS ASSOCIATED WITH FIELD-CENTRED AGRICULTURE Several limitations arise from this long-standing concept of agriculture.

This estimate has not been 32 Issues for Analysis and Evaluation challenged by agronomists to date. Why such preoccupation with soil chemistry? It is the easiest kind of soil deficiency to study, giving quick, precise and replicable results, which point to simple remedies. The results of soil chemistry analyses are easy to interpret; by adding certain amounts and combinations of fertilizer nutrients, one can expect predictable increments to production. Moreover, such research gets funding easily, given the interests of fertilizer producers in such knowledge.

Modern agricultural research’s focus on soil chemistry and above-ground portions of plants has led to solutions that favour chemical and mechanical means. The belief that chemical fertilizers are the best way to deal with soil fertility limitations has arisen from – and has reinforced – the image of agriculture as a kind of industrial enterprise, where producing desired outputs is mostly a matter of investing certain kinds and amounts of inputs. Consequently, viewing agriculture more as a biological than as a mechanical process attaches greater value to the use of organic inputs.

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