From wild harvesting to agroforest cultivation: A Chamaedorea palm case study from Chiapas, Mexico
Non-timber forest products (NTFP) commercialisation usually modifies the livelihoods and economic strategies of forest people to make room for NTFP cultivation systems. This paper analyzes livelihood changes, new production techniques and future challenges of a case study in a South-eastern Mexican community where Chamaedorea palm cultivation is displacing wild harvesting. The results illustrate the fast adoption of palm plantations due to salient improvements in the economic return to effort. The change was led by richer households, although communal structures have allowed the middle income households to participate in the process. While palm producers do not tend to have beans and corn subsistence plots, landless poorer members have been left out of palm activities, basically remaining as subsistence farmers.
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