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Adoption and Impacts of Zero-Tillage in the Rice-Wheat Zone of Irrigated Haryana, India

  • Erenstein, Olaf
  • Malik, R.K.
  • Singh, Sher

This study documents the adoption and impacts of zero-tillage (ZT) wheat in the rice-wheat systems of India’s Haryana State primarily drawing on a detailed empirical survey of 400 rice-wheat farmers. Our random stratified sample revealed 34.5% to be ZT wheat adopters and a quarter of the wheat area in the surveyed communities to be under ZT. The study suggests the potential for further diffusion but also flags the issue of disadoption (10%). ZT adopters, non-adopters, and disadopters differ significantly in terms of their resource bases, with adopters typically showing the most favorable values. ZT drastically reduces tractor operations in farmers’ ZT wheat fields from an average of 8 passes to a single pass, implying a saving of 6 tractor hours and 36 liters of diesel per hectare. At 4.4 tons per hectare, ZT achieved the highest wheat yields in the survey year, a significant 4.0% yield increase over conventional tillage. The higher yield and lower water use resulted in significantly higher water productivity indicators for ZT wheat. ZT did not have any significant spillover effect on the subsequent rice crop. The combination of a significant “yield effect” and “cost-saving effect” makes ZT adoption worthwhile and is the driving force behind its rapid spread and widespread acceptance, providing a much needed boost to economic returns to wheat cultivation. Based on these findings, the study provides a number of recommendations for research and development in Haryana’s rice-wheat systems.

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File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/56092
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Paper provided by CIMMYT: International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center in its series Impact Studies with number 56092.

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Date of creation: Dec 2007
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Handle: RePEc:ags:cimmis:56092
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  1. Molden, D. J. & Sakthivadivel, R. & Perry, C. J. & de Fraiture, C. & Kloezen, W. H., 1998. "Indicators for comparing performance of irrigated agricultural systems," IWMI Books, Reports H022308, International Water Management Institute.
  2. Cabangon, R. J. & Tuong, T. P. & Abdullah, N. B., 2002. "Comparing water input and water productivity of transplanted and direct-seeded rice production systems," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 11-31, September.
  3. Abrol, I. P., 1999. "Sustaining rice-wheat system productivity in the Indo-Gangetic plains: water management-related issues," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 31-35, March.
  4. Farooq, Umar & Sharif, Muhammad & Erenstein, Olaf, 2007. "Adoption and Impacts of Zero-Tillage in the Rice-Wheat Zone of Irrigated Punjab, Pakistan," Impact Studies 56095, CIMMYT: International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center.
  5. Molden, D., 1997. "Accounting for water use and productivity," IWMI Books, Reports H021374, International Water Management Institute.
  6. Molden, D. J. & Sakthivadivel, R. & Perry, C. J. & de Fraiture, C. & Kloezen, W. H., 1998. "Indicators for comparing performance of irrigated agricultural systems," IWMI Research Reports H022308, International Water Management Institute.
  7. Feder, Gershon & Just, Richard E & Zilberman, David, 1985. "Adoption of Agricultural Innovations in Developing Countries: A Survey," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(2), pages 255-98, January.
  8. Seckler, D., 1996. "The new era of water resources management: from "dry" to "wet" water savings," IWMI Books, Reports H018206, International Water Management Institute.
  9. Praduman kumar & Anjani kumar & Surabhi Mittal, 2004. "Total Factor Productivity of Crop Sector in the Indo-Gangetic Plain of India: Sustainability issues revisited," Indian Economic Review, Department of Economics, Delhi School of Economics, vol. 39(1), pages 169-201, January.
  10. The World Bank,, 2005. "India: Re-Energizing the Agricultural Sector to Sustain Growth and Reduce Poverty," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195674323, March.
  11. Qureshi, A. S. & Shah, T. & Akhtar, M, 2003. "The groundwater economy of Pakistan," IWMI Working Papers H033572, International Water Management Institute.
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