A Future for Small Farms? Biodiversity and Sustainable Agriculture
Small farms play a crucial role in conserving the agricultural biodiversity that underpins long-term food security worldwide. Particularly in centers of crop genetic diversity – such as Mesoamerica in the case of maize (corn) and the Andean region in the case of potatoes – small farmers are the ‘keystone species’ in agricultural ecosystems of great value to humankind. Today, however, a formidable nexus of market forces and political forces threatens both small farmers and the biodiversity they sustain. Countervailing public policies are urgently needed. These should include the removal of existing policy biases against small farmers; social recognition of the contribution of in situ conservation to human well-being; development of markets for ‘traditional’ varieties of crops and livestock; the provision of local public goods in areas where farmers cultivate diversity; payments for the environmental service of on-farm conservation; and support for part-time farming as an element of diversified household livelihood strategies.
|Date of creation:||2004|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: (413) 545-6355
Fax: (413) 545-2921
Web page: http://www.peri.umass.edu/
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Leopoldo Dimas & Susan Kandel & Deborah Barry & Herman Rosa, 2004. "Compensation for Environmental Services and Rural Communities: Lessons from the Americas," Working Papers wp96, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
- James Boyce, 1996. "Ecological Distribution, Agricultural Trade Liberalization, and In Situ Genetic Diversity," Published Studies ps14, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
- Klaus Deininger, 2003. "Land Policies for Growth and Poverty Reduction," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 15125.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:uma:periwp:wp86. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Judy Fogg)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.