Navigation Links
Are organic crops as productive as conventional?
Date:3/25/2008

Can organic cropping systems be as productive as conventional systems" The answer is an unqualified, Yes for alfalfa or wheat and a qualified Yes most of the time for corn and soybeans according to research reported by scientists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and agricultural consulting firm AGSTAT in the March-April 2008 issue of Agronomy Journal.

The researchers primarily based their answer on results from the Wisconsin Integrated Cropping Systems Trials, conducted for 13 years (1990-2002) at Arlington, WI and 8 years (1990-1997) at Elkhorn, WI. These trials compared six cropping systems (three cash grain and three forage based crops) ranging from diverse, organic systems to less diverse, conventional systems. The cash grain systems were 1) conventional continuous corn, 2) conventional corn-soybean, and 3) organic corn-soybean-wheat where the wheat included a leguminous cover crop. The three forage based systems were 1) conventional corn-alfalfa-alfalfa-alfalfa, 2) organic corn-oats-alfalfa-alfalfa, and 3) rotationally grazed pasture.

In this research they found that: organic forage crops yielded as much or more dry matter as their conventional counterparts with quality sufficient to produce as much milk as the conventional systems; and organic grain crops: corn, soybean, and winter wheat produced 90% as well as their conventionally managed counterparts. In spite of some climatic differences and a large difference in soil drainage between the two sites, the relatively small difference in the way the cropping systems performed suggested that these results are widely applicable across prairie-derived soils in the U.S. upper Midwest. The researchers also compared their results to other data analysis done on this topic in the U.S. Midwest.

Although researchers found that diverse, low-input/organic cropping systems were as productive as conventional systems most of the time, there is a need for further research, according to the studys author Dr. Joshua L. Posner, University of Wisconsin.

There continues to be improvements in weed control for organic systems that may close the gap in productivity of corn and soybeans in wet seasons, Posner says. On the other hand, technological advances may accelerate productivity gains in conventional systems that would outstrip the gains in organic systems even in favorable years.

The true question of whether organic cropping systems are as productive as conventional systems is a dynamic question and one that requires continual reevaluation.


'/>"/>

Contact: Sara Uttech
suttech@agronomy.org
608-268-4948
American Society of Agronomy
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. New microsensor measures volatile organic compounds in water and air on-site
2. Surprise in the organic orchard -- a healthier worm in the apple
3. Study reveals that nitrogen fertilizers deplete soil organic carbon
4. Is it organic or not?
5. Uncharged organic molecule can bind negatively charged ions
6. Dissolved organic matter in the water column may influence coral health
7. MIT: Human-generated ozone will damage crops
8. Iowa Staters talk biofuels, healthy oils and pharma crops at AAAS meeting
9. What farmers think about GM crops
10. Gene that controls ozone resistance of plants could lead to drought-resistant crops
11. Study finds Viagra increases release of key reproductive hormone
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/6/2016)... N.C. , Dec. 6, 2016 Valencell ... announced today it has seen a third consecutive year ... biometric sensor technology in 2016 with a 360 percent ... last year. This increase was driven by sales of ... as robust interest in its technology for hearables for ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... , December 1, 2016 ... type (Fingerprint, Voice), Future Technology (Iris Recognition System), ... Region - Global Forecast to 2021", published by ... 442.7 Million in 2016, and is projected to ... a CAGR of 14.06%.      (Logo: ...
(Date:11/30/2016)... CHICAGO , Nov. 30, 2016  higi ... a new partnership initiative targeting national brands, industry ... and reward their respective audiences for taking steps ... Since its inception in 2012, higi has built ... US, impacting over 38 million people who have ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/6/2016)... PHOENIX and SAN DIEGO ... (OTCQB:CELZ) announced the appointment of Santosh Kesari , ... Board. Dr. Kesari will leverage his experience in neurology and ... its adult stem cell for treatment of stroke. The AmnioStem ... amniotic fluid, which has previously shown therapeutic activity in ...
(Date:12/6/2016)... ... December 06, 2016 , ... ... on discovery and development of precision treatments for neurodegenerative diseases, today announced ... disease (AD) inhibited the direct neurotoxic effect of prion-like forms of Amyloid ...
(Date:12/5/2016)... DUBLIN , Dec 5, 2016 ... report "Biomarkers - Technologies, Markets and Companies" to their ... , , ... biomarkers and their discovery using various -omics technologies such as proteomics ... biomarkers and new tests are also based on biomarker. ...
(Date:12/5/2016)... SAN DIEGO , Dec. 5, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ ... treatments for congestive heart failure and other chronic ... is joining the company as Chief Financial Officer ... Renova Therapeutics with 20 years of experience in ... closely held biotech and software companies. Most recently, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: