Sustainably increasing production in mixed crop-livestock systems is essential to ensure food security, write M. Herrero and colleagues in Science.
Mixed crop-livestock systems are home to two-thirds of the global population and produce almost half the world’s cereals and most of the staple crops, meat and milk consumed by poor people.
But to cope with the population growth, environmental change and rising demand for animal products predicted for the next 20 years, these systems will need to raise both productivity and resource use efficiency.
In some areas, this will mean finding ways to produce more food on less land, say the authors. One solution could be to change the type of livestock reared. In South Asia, mixed systems are already changing from rearing ruminants to poultry, which has enabled a much faster growth in production.
Read more… (SciDev.Net)