Type: Book

Advances in Conservation Agriculture Volume 1 Systems and science


Professor Kassam is Visiting Professor at the University of Reading (UK) and Moderator of the FAO-hosted Global Platform for Conservation Agriculture Community of Practice (Global CA-CoP). He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology (UK) and has received an OBE from the British Government for services to tropical agriculture and rural development. Prof. Kassam is Chair of the International Conservation Agriculture Advisory Panel for Africa (ICAAP-Africa) and Vice-Chair of the Conservation Agriculture Association for the UK (CA-UK). He is former Chair of the Aga Khan Foundation (UK), the FOCUS Humanitarian Assistance Europe Foundation and the Tropical Agriculture Association (TAA). He has held senior positions at international organisations such as FAO and CGIAR and has published widely on Conservation Agriculture.



Publication date:

Q3 2019

Length of book:

280 pages

ISBN-13: 9781786762641

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This volume summarises research on key components for successful Conservation Agriculture (CA).

Chapters review the latest research on ways of optimising no-till techniques to minimise soil disturbance in relation to seeding, weeding and other operations Chapters also review ways to improve soil health in CA, including mulch cover, cover crops, rotations and intercropping.

The book also includes case studies on optimising CA in particular systems, including rice, root, tuber and horticultural crops as well as integrating livestock in CA systems. The book concludes by looking at certification schemes and institutional support to promote good CA practice.

Key features

  • Reviews how to reconcile no-till techniques to minimise soil disturbance with operations such as seeding, weeding and harvesting.
  • Assesses the latest evidence on improving soil health through the use of mulch cover, cover crops, rotations and intercropping.
  • Includes case studies reviewing current studies on optimising CA in rice, root, tuber and horticultural crops as well as integrating livestock in CA systems.

What others are saying...

"This is an important, timely and authoritative collection on the values of Conservation Agriculture worldwide. Great advances have been made in recent years over a range of approaches and systems to improve both the productivity of agricultural systems and their positive contributions to ecosystem services and natural capital. Conservation Agriculture has been taken up by millions of farmers, fitting methods to their particular circumstances to produce sustainable models of food production."
Jules Pretty, Professor of Environment and Society, University of Essex, UK

Table of contents

1.Introduction: The need for sustainable agriculture and the role of CA in sustainable production intensification: an overview: Amir Kassam, University of Reading, UK;
2.Development of CA systems globally: Amir Kassam, University of Reading, UK;
3.The role of CA systems in soil and landscape health management: Don Reicosky, Soil Scientist Emeritus USDA-ARS and University of Minnesota, USA;
4.The role of no or minimum mechanical soil disturbance in CA systems: Theodor Friedrich, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), Italy;
5.The role and management of soil mulch cover (including cover crops) in CA systems: Ademir Calegari, Agronomic Institute of Paraná, Brazil;
6.The role of crop and cropping system management in CA systems, including varieties, agronomy, rotations and associations: Peter Hobbs, Cornell University, USA;
7.Management of horticultural CA systems involving root and tuber crops, and crops with yields at or below the ground surface: Jamil Abdalla Fayad, Agricultural Research and Rural Extension Company of Santa Catarina (EPAGRI), Brazil;
8.Managing CA-based perennial systems such as orchards, plantation, agroforestry, silvo-pasture and pasture systems: Amir Kassam, University of Reading, UK;
9.Integration of livestock in CA systems: John Landers, International Zero Tillage Consultant, Brazil;
10.Mechanization in CA systems: Augusto Guilherme de Araújo, Instituto Agronomico do Paraná (IAPAR), Brazil;
11.Certification schemes for CA systems: Dr Juliana Albertengo;
12.Institutional and policy support for CA uptake: Tom Goddard, Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, Canada;