The Impact of Conservation Tillage on the Productivity and Stability of Maize Cropping Systems: A Case Study in Western Mexico

 acte de colloque | |     

This paper examines the economics of introducing conservation tillage into maize cropping systems in the state of Jalisco, in the western part of Mexico. A stochastic cost-benefit analysis (SCBA) of introducing conservation tillage in two contrasting agro-climatic zones in the four main maize management systems in the area was carried out. The SCBA takes into account the effects of conservation tillage on average returns and fully evaluates its potential risk-reducing aspect. The SCBA results were then used for a stochastic dominance analysis to evaluate farmers' incentives, characterized by their aversion to risk. The analysis reveals that although conservation tillage is economically viable, cash-constrained farmers, especially in the dry areas, may not readily adopt it. This is because conservation tillage is not adapted to small-scale farmers in Mexico, who lack seeding equipment and need techniques that are less reliant on herbicides. It is suggested that more work should be done with the participation of farmers in the region to attain a conservation tillage system that is better adapted to their circumstances.

Mots-clés : maïs, eau, Les Hautes Terres , petite agriculture familiale, Bilan hydrique, Socio-économie

Conservation tillage effects on runoff reduction in rainfed maize of semi-arid zones of western Mexico

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Between 1994 and 1999, a series of studies were done to try to quantify and to modelize the effects of conservation tillage (direct drilling of seeds into a residue mulch-CT) and particularly of a partial residue mulch on water dynamics in the soil-plantatmosphere system under semi-arid conditions of western Mexico. They showed that with even a very minimal amount of residue (1.5 t/ha), CT begins to give worthwhile improvements in productivity (Scopel, 1994, Scopel et al., 1999), illustrating the important role of runoff reduction (30% less than with traditional tillage) in explaining benefits of this technique. This study set out to explain the mechanisms involved in this reduction of runoff losses, trying to separate the short term effects on water movement on the soil surface and the long term effects on water infiltration capacity (Antoine Findeling 2001).

Mots-clés : macrofaune du sol, ruissellement, érosion, fertilité, scv

Rapport de mission au Brésil 1999

 rapport de mission/expertise | |     

Rapport de mission au CPAC et au CNPAF de l'Embrapa, aux stations de recherches de l'Agronorte à Sinop, et de la fondation ABC à Ponta Grossa: observations et recommandations

Mots-clés : Agriculture générale, Agriculture de conservation, propriétés physico-chimiques du sol
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