Integrating animal husbandry with crops and trees - a review - Projects
Updated : October 2020
With increasing demand for natural plant and animal fibres in the fashion industry and stringent regulations over sustainable practices across the fashion value chain, many brands are exploring sustainable, economical solutions. In the animal based fibre value chain, while industries explore eco-friendly opportunities for the core production processes, i.e from the fibre stage, the first part of the value chain which is the animal rearing also calls for intense sustainable solutions as their farming could also contribute to GHG emissions.
This review article explores the opportunity of integrating animal husbandry with agricultural and forest ecosystems. Incorporating pastures/forages in the biogeochemical rotation cycle along with controlled grazing, called ley farming, and agroforestry, such as alley cropping, are examples of integrated farming systems.
The objective is to explore the various sustainable opportunities in the livestock sector to meet the UN's sustainability development goals (SDGs) and also explore the opportunities of integrating animal husbandry with crops and trees and their potential to sequester GHG emissions. Details on various methods of integrating livestock and agriculture and their potential benefits are provided.
The study concludes that site specific integration of livestock and crops would be feasible and also have the potential to significantly minimize the GHG emissions. More research and associated policies in this sector could enable expansion of these systems globally.