Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

MODELLING CROP–LIVESTOCK SYSTEMS FOR ACHIEVING FOOD SECURITY AND INCREASING PRODUCTION EFFICIENCIES IN THE ETHIOPIAN HIGHLANDS

  • TILAHUN AMEDE (a1) and ROBERT J. DELVE (a2)

Summary

An action research process was conducted with communities in Gununo, southern Ethiopia (2000–2003), to develop alternative cropping strategies for achieving their food security and cash needs. Farmers identified three major production objectives depending on their household priorities and socio-economic status. In Group I, farmers are currently food insecure and want to produce enough food from their own farms. In Group II, they produce enough food but want to fulfil their financial needs. In Group III, farmers rely on off-farm activities and want to increase cash income. The current system mostly fulfils the nutritional requirement of Group II. Groups I and III were highly food deficit from their own farms, with production covering less than seven months per year and fulfilling <50% of the recommended daily allowances (RDA) for human nutrition. Using a linear programming optimization model, it was possible to fulfil the RDA of Group I by reallocating the cropping area of maize, sweet potato, coffee and wheat to potato, enset and kale in proportions of 50, 29 and 15%, respectively. To satisfy both financial and nutritional needs of Group II, an increase in the proportion of coffee and beans by about 29 and 7.3%, respectively, over the current land allocation was needed. This shift would triple their cash income. The cash income of Group III increased four-fold by full replacement of the cereals and root crops by coffee (48%) and teff (52%), though the total income was not enough to secure food security due to their small landholdings. In farms of Groups I and II, the shift to the suggested cropping will reduce soil erosion by about 40%, while it will have no effect on farms of Group III. This shift will reduce the quantity and quality of livestock feed, except for Group I. Moreover, it will increase the farm crop water requirement 17.5 and 37% in Groups I and III (resource poor households) and reduce it in resource rich households of Group II. These changes did not imply extra labour in any groups. Whilst this model can optimize systems for food security and cash income, its research for development value is in identifying possible intensification strategies for farming systems and their implications on the farming systems, rather than generating practical recommendations for all cropping systems.

Copyright

Corresponding author

Corresponding author: R.Delve@cgiar.org

References

Hide All
Amede, T., Belachew, T. and Geta, E. (2001). Reversing the degradation of arable land in the Ethiopian Highlands. Managing African Soils, 2001; No. 23. IIED-London.
Amede, T. and Taboge, E. (2007). Enhancing farmer innovation through manipulation of soil fertility gradients in enset systems. P. 289297. In Improving Human Welfare and Environmental Conservation by Empowering Farmers to Combat Soil Fertility Degradation. (Ed. Bationo, A.) African Soils Network (AFNet). Springer Verlag.
Amede, T., Stroud, A. and Aune, J. (2004). Advancing human nutrition without degrading land resources through modelling cropping systems in the Ethiopian Highlands. Food and Nutrition Bulletin 25:344353.
Bonesmisza, E. (1982). Nitrogen cycling in coffee plantations. Plant and Soil 67:214246.
EHNRI (1998). Food composition table for use in Ethiopia. Part IV. Ethiopian Health and Nutrition Research Institute, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
FAO. (1990). Conducting Small-scale Nutrition Surveys: A Field Manual, FAO, Rome, Italy.
FAO (1998). Crop Evapotranspiration: Guidelines for Computing Crop Water Requirements. FAO, Rome.
FAO (2005). Local climate estimator (New LockClim 1.06). FAO, Rome.
Gregory, P. J., Ingram, J. S. I., Anderson, R., Betts, R. A. and Brovkin, V. (2002). Environmental consequences of alternative practices for intensifying crop production. Agriculture, Ecosystem and Environment 88:287290.
Kaluski, D. N., Einat-Ophir, E., and Amede, T. (2002). Food security and nutrition - The Ethiopian case for action. Public Health Nutrition 5:373381.
McIntyre, B. D., Bouldin, D. R., Urey, G. H. and Kizito, F. (2001). Modelling cropping strategies to improve human nutrition in Uganda. Agricultural Systems, 67:105120.
Renault, D. and Wallender, W. W. (2000). Nutritional water productivity and diets. Agricultural Water Management 45:275296.
Roggero, P. P. and Toderi, M. (2002). Impact of cropping systems on soil erosion in the clay hills of central Italy. Advances in Geo-ecology 35:471480.
Shack, R. and Ertiro, C. (1995). A linear model for predicting enset plant yield and assessment of Kocho production in Ethiopia. UNDP, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Tsegaye, A. and Struik, P. C. (2002). Analysis of enset (Enset ventricosum) indigenous production methods and farm based biodiversity in major enset growing regions of Southern Ethiopia. Experimental Agriculture 38:291315.
UNICEF (United Nations Children's Fund) (1999). Review of drought nutrition response. UNICEF, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
WHO. (1999). WHO/FAO Expert Consultations. Handbook on Human Nutrient Requirements. Geneva: WHO.
Zingore, S., Gonzalez-Estrada, E., Delve, R. J., Herrero, M., Dimes, J. P. and Giller, K. E. (2007). Evaluation of resource management options for African smallholder farms using an integrated modelling approach. Paper presented at the Farm System Design Conference, Italy, 2007.

MODELLING CROP–LIVESTOCK SYSTEMS FOR ACHIEVING FOOD SECURITY AND INCREASING PRODUCTION EFFICIENCIES IN THE ETHIOPIAN HIGHLANDS

  • TILAHUN AMEDE (a1) and ROBERT J. DELVE (a2)

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed