Crop-Animal Production Systems in Tropical Regions - Review -

  • Devendra, C. (International Livestock Research Institute)
  • Published : 2000.02.01


Crop-animal systems which form the backbone of agriculture in the tropics are discussed with reference to their characteristics, economic importance of animals, genesis and types of crop-animal systems, relevance and potential importance, and priorities for research and development. These production systems are found across all agroecological zones: rain-fed temperate and highland systems, semi-arid and arid tropics, and sub-humid and humid tropics: the last four are priority areas in Asia. The potential importance of these systems in Asia is reflected in their advantages, synergism and complimentarity, economic benefits and contribution to sustainability. Illustrative case studies are cited which are appropriate to the two broad types of mixed farming systems: systems combining animals and annual cropping, and systems combining animals with perennial cropping with reference to Indonesia, Philippines, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, China and Nigeria. Priorities for research and development should address more complete use of the animal genetic resources, intensive utilisation of the feed resources, development-oriented utilisation of research results, minimizing animal diseases, and implementation of appropriate institutional and policy issues.

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