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CTA. 1996. BEAM. Spore 64. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/47392
A computer model, called BEAM (Big-Economic Agroforestry Modelling), has been developed to help people andorganizations decide where and how to practice agroforestry. Technical and economic information on agroforestry world-widecan also be provided...
A computer model, called BEAM (Big-Economic Agroforestry Modelling), has been developed to help people and organizations decide where and how to practice agroforestry. Technical and economic information on agroforestry world-wide can also be provided and exchanged. BEAM was designed at the University of Wales with funding from the European Union and the UK's Overseas Development Administration. BEAM will enable users to input all the information they have on how a particular project will be managed. Criteria include how the site is to be set up, the species and spacing of the trees, and the climatic and soil factors of the site. Different options 011 the wa in which the site could be planted can also be fed in. Once all the data are entered, information can be extracted from the model. For instance, projections can be obtained for an annual basis over a rotation of 20 or 30 years. Yields and returns of the crops and forestry species can be shown separately or as a whole for the agroforestry system, as opposed to the forestry system or the agriculture system. The model currently works for rubber, poplar, Pinus patula. and hedgerow plants intercropped with species like leucaena. gliricidia and maize. However, if the appropriate information is available in the required format then BEAM can be adapted for other tree species. BEAM has already been used in Tanzania to see how P patla trees can be grown with a mixture of crops underneath them at a small farm level, at village level or at regional level. A joint project with the Centre de cooperation international en recherche agronomique pour le developpement (CIRAD), funded by the European Union, will be using BEAM to assess the effect of cropping maize, cassava, groundnuts or cocoa under coconut palms. It will also look at a model for grazing livestock under palms. In the Embu district of Kenva a new initiative between the Kenya Forestry Research Institute (KEFRI), the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock, the International Centre for Research in Agroforestry (ICRAF) and the UK's Overseas Development Administration (ODA), is developing a BEAM model to determine the best strategies for feeding dairy cows, based 011 fodder cut from planted hedgerows. In south-east Asia the Australian National University have used a BEAM model to assist in the design of smallholder farming systems in Indonesia and the Philippines. It is also being used to simulate different spacings of rubber trees to create the right amount of shade to suppress imperata grass, which is a major problem for farmers in the region, and to asses the effect this would have on farm incomes. In India BEAM is being used to assess the effect of using eucalyptus trees in arid areas and in Europe to look for the best site and management system for fast growing poplars. Agricultural and Forest Sciences University of Wales Bangor LL57 2UW UK