Keynote Lectures

Description

Redesign of agricultural systems according to ecological principles has been proposed for the development of sustainable systems. We review a wide variety of ecologically-based crop production practices that focus on forage crops in farming systems and discuss their potential role in enhancing the profitability, environmental sustainability and resilience. Crop-livestock systems that most closely mimic natural systems through appropriate integration of diverse components appear to offer the greatest potential benefits. These systems are more energy efficient and combine high productivity with low ecological footprint. Greater understanding of ecological relationships within crop-livestock systems are required to purposefully and proactively redesign agricultural systems for profitability, sustainability and resilience.

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Potential of Forages in Crop Diversification and Crop Rotation

Redesign of agricultural systems according to ecological principles has been proposed for the development of sustainable systems. We review a wide variety of ecologically-based crop production practices that focus on forage crops in farming systems and discuss their potential role in enhancing the profitability, environmental sustainability and resilience. Crop-livestock systems that most closely mimic natural systems through appropriate integration of diverse components appear to offer the greatest potential benefits. These systems are more energy efficient and combine high productivity with low ecological footprint. Greater understanding of ecological relationships within crop-livestock systems are required to purposefully and proactively redesign agricultural systems for profitability, sustainability and resilience.