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Agroforestry Systems

In the moist tropics, a high level of sustainability is attributed to agroforestry systems. We therefore strive not only to better understand these systems, but also to refine them in a targetted manner:

  • Comparing production systems – By conducting our own long-term field trials and performing socio-economic studies in Latin America, Africa and Asia we examine the impacts of agroforestry systems on people and the environment. We analyse the economic and agronomic benefits and drawbacks, and study the effects upon soil fertility and biological diversity.
  • Developing best practice – Working together with local partner organizations, we develop and research novel production techniques. Taking a participatory approach, we seek and test solutions to specific problems that will be viable in practice.
  • Transmitting knowledge – We share our knowledge by providing training and producing documentation material designed for practitioners. We take care to involve in-country scientists, extensionists and students in our project work wherever possible, in order to build the maximum amount of local know-how in a sustainable manner.

Cocoa is the most important crop addressed by our agroforestry work. Our agroforestry project in Bolivia is part of a larger programme, the Farming Systems Comparison in the Tropics.

Projects in Agroforestry Systems