Farming system design for innovative crop-livestock integration in Europe

Updated : October 2020


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Crop-livestock integration is suggested by many experts including fashion as a sustainable option to minimize GHG emissions from the livestock farming, however, implementing them on a large scale has its own challenges.

This case study involves development of integrated crop-livestock systems (ICLS) design and its implementation in 15 farms across Europe to analyse the challenges, constraints and resources for innovation. It involved the understanding of existing challenges and initiatives in integrating livestock and crop and emerging sustainable opportunities at the field, farm and territory levels with the help of farmers, local stakeholders and other eco-friendly industry representatives.

The study initially involved development of a conceptual framework based on a conceptual model (crops, grasslands, animals) to arrive at various innovative solutions and identified three integrating systems according to their degrees of spatial and temporal coordination: complementarity, local synergy, territorial synergy.

It concludes that farmer workload is the key challenge while demonstrating various sustainability benefits of these systems and that development of these types of designs and opportunities for smart social innovation could result in identifying innovative, sustainable integrating systems for large scale implementation.

Read More: Farming system design for innovative crop-livestock integration in Europe


Innovative design models for livestock-crop integration

Smart social innovation in livestock-crop integration

Complementarity system for crop-livestock integration

Local synergy for crop-livestock integration

Territorial synergy for crop-livestock integration

Large scale crop-livestock system challenges

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  1. Farming system design for innovative crop-livestock integration in Europe
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