Integrated crop-livestock systems in sub-Saharan Africa: An option or an imperative?
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Outlook on Agriculture;26(4): 237-246
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/29327
Rapid growth of the human and livestock populations in sub-Saharan Africa is creating unprecedented increases in food and feed demands. These population pressures on a fixed landbases are likely to promote severe competition for resources and drive agriculture progressively towards intensification. Integrated crop-livestock systems, already common in the highlands, are expected to evolve rapidly elsewhere. Research is required to develop technolgical alternatives which promote better resource use through synergies from crop-livestock integration. Maintenance of soil fertility and provision of livestock feeds appear to be the main areas of reciprocal benefits, while animal traction may be an option for increasing land and labour productivity. This paper assesses the challenge facing sub-Saharan agriculture and the potential contribution of crop-livestock integrated systems towards agricultural growth and sustainability.