Yield and Economic Performance of Organic and Conventional Cotton-based Farming Systems – Results from a Field Trial in India

Description: This study presents agronomic and economic data from the conversion phase (2007-2010) of a farming systems comparison trial on a Vertisol soil in Madhya Pradesh, central India. A cotton-soybean-wheat crop rotation under biodynamic, organic and conventional (with and without Bt cotton) management was investigated. We observed a significant yield gap between organic and conventional farming systems in the 1st crop cycle for cotton (-29%) and wheat (-27%), whereas in the 2nd crop cycle cotton and wheat yields were similar in all farming systems due to lower yields in the conventional systems. In contrast, organic soybean yields were marginally lower than conventional yields. Averaged across all crops, conventional farming systems achieved significantly higher gross margins in cycle 1 (+29%), whereas in cycle 2 gross margins in organic farming systems were significantly higher (+25%).
Author: D. Forster, Ch. Andres, R. Verma, Ch. Zundel, M. M. Messmer, P. Mäder
Year: 2013
Category: Farming Aspects, Seed Cotton
Submitted by: Messmer Monika


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