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

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

The world's foodstuff provide must upward thrust considerably, but either arable and water offers consistent with capita are reducing. not just are glossy agricultural equipment past the achieve of these affliction the best meals lack of confidence yet also they are ecologically harmful, depending upon fossil power and chemical inputs. This quantity deals a set of cutting edge and numerous methods to agricultural improvement. Documented in 12 case reviews, those ways are reliant upon larger wisdom, ability and labour enter, instead of greater capital expenditure. they're proven to extend yield considerably, occasionally doubling or tripling output. This quantity provides the recommendations and operational capacity for reorienting agricultural efforts in the direction of those extra environmentally pleasant and socially fascinating methods within the constructed in addition to constructing international.

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Extra info for Agroecological Innovations : Increasing Food Production with Participatory Development

Sample text

Net increases in income and food security are crucial criteria, and labour in rural communities almost never has zero opportunity cost. The slow spread of practices that are agroecologically sound has often been due to their substantial labour requirements. Returns to labour in particular need to be assessed when evaluating possibilities for the adoption and spread of agroecological systems, as considered in Chapter 5. This acknowledged, economic profitability is not the only criterion affecting farmers’ decisions.

Until something like the perpetual motion machine is invented, such disproportionality is not possible with mechanical phenomena, which depend on continuous inputs for their operation. Biological processes, on the other hand, can be self-sustaining and can adapt and evolve unassisted. Moreover, biological inputs can reproduce themselves. How one regards and utilizes inputs thus differs in subtle but important ways according to whether they are understood within a mechanical framework or in a biological context.

Households also have cultural values that need to be respected, and most parents attach great importance to opportunities for the next generation, being willing to make sacrifices in the present for their children’s future. Maintaining intact, attractive rural communities is a value that gets considered alongside individual increases in income. So while economics need to be evaluated, because farmers must consider how innovations would affect their net income, it is not a sole determinant. It is one of several tests applied by farmers when assessing alternative agricultural practices.

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