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Pesquisa Agropecuária Brasileira

versão impressa ISSN 0100-204Xversão On-line ISSN 1678-3921


MARTHA JUNIOR, Geraldo Bueno; ALVES, Eliseu  e  CONTINI, Elisio. Economic dimension of integrated crop-livestock systems. Pesq. agropec. bras. [online]. 2011, vol.46, n.10, pp.1117-1126. ISSN 0100-204X.

Integrated crop-livestock systems (ICLS) have been proposed as a technology solution to meet sustainability criteria, but this claim has been based mainly on agronomic and environmental indicators. In the present study, the economic perspective of ICLS was explored. The potential economic benefits of these systems may be reflected in economies of scope (cost reduction associated with producing multiple outputs) or in the risk-reducing effects of diversification. Furthermore, they may involve lower yield variability and overall higher yields. The accurate measurement of interactions between crop and animal (pasture) components is a key step to be pursued. Decision making toward diversified vis-à-vis specialized agricultural systems must be made according to relative prices. ICLS out-compete specialized livestock systems but do not show competitive rates of return in comparison to specialized soybean systems. The high demand for capital in ICLS, particularly for the acquisition of growing animals for fattening, explains ICLS' lower return rates and is perceived as a major constraint on the widespread adoption of mixed systems. The design of innovative financing mechanisms will be essential to foster and speed large-scale adoption of the technology.

Palavras-chave : risk analysis; diversification; economies of scope; degraded pasture; beef cattle; soybean.

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