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“Comparing economic and environmental sustainability of intensive and organic agricultural systems to support land use policy formulation aimed at reducing agrarian distress in Karnataka, India”

Shah, Pratik (2010) “Comparing economic and environmental sustainability of intensive and organic agricultural systems to support land use policy formulation aimed at reducing agrarian distress in Karnataka, India”. Masters thesis, Wageningen University and Research centre, Plant Production System. . [Submitted]

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Summary

Karnataka state is a state of India with diverse agro-climatic zones.In 2001 it had a population of 53 million and 66% of population habitants living in villages. Agriculture is still major occupation in the rural areas of Karnataka and more than 90% of rural people are dependent on agriculture and agro-industries. However irregular rainfall patterns,pest attacks and poor nutrient management are resulting more frequently in crop failures. This has resulted in agrarian distress as with crop failures, farmers are unable to repay the loans. The government of Karnataka introduced Karnataka state policy of organic farming to decrease agrarian distress. In order to asses the impacts of this policy on agriculture, economic and ecological sustainability were compared among organic agriculture and conventional agriculture in two districts, Mysore and Chitradurga. Input and output relationships of agriculture were quantified by a technical coefficient generator (TechnoGIN). Four scenarios were selected for comparing the organic and conventional agriculture: 1) Difference between organic agriculture and conventional agriculture in current situation; 2)Projecting changes in future for the year 2015; 3)Different impacts of crop failure on debts of farmers; 4)Optimal nutrient management in conventional and organic agriculture. The data used were based on own field surveys and farm surveys by ATREE NGO), agricultural scientist expertise and literature review. Economic indicators included gross income, fertilizer costs and net profit and the ecological indicators included nitrogen losses, nitrogen surpluses, water requirements and the biocide index. Results shows that different crop rotations vary in profitability while comparing organic and conventional agriculture, but the risk of getting in debt are more in conventional than organic even while projecting the changes for the year 2015. The nitrogen losses and surpluses are more in conventional than organic agriculture but there is problem of nitrogen mining in organic farming. In the end we can conclude that due to low costs of inputs in organic compared to conventional agriculture,Karnataka state policy of organic farming can reduce distress in the selected villages in Mysore and Chitradurga due to low risk of getting debts. However,considering the major crops,organic farming is less of an option in Mysore,as productivity and hence profitability is lower compared to conventional farming.


EPrint Type:Thesis
Subjects: Crop husbandry
Environmental aspects > Landscape and recreation
"Organics" in general > Country reports > India
Research affiliation: Netherlands > Wageningen University and Research Centre WUR
Deposited By: Shah, Ir Pratik
ID Code:19207
Deposited On:04 Aug 2011 14:46
Last Modified:04 Aug 2011 14:46
Document Language:English
Status:Unpublished
Refereed:Peer-reviewed and accepted

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