Synergies and trade-offs for sustainable agriculture: Nutritional yields and climate-resilience for cereal crops in Central India
This article, published in the Global Food Security journal, illustrates an approach to examine trade-offs and synergies among the multiple objectives on sustainable agriculure for monsoon cereal crops in central India. These objectives include efficient use of land to produce nutrients for human consumption, climate resilience, and income for farmers. The authors estimate nutritional yields for protein, energy and iron and examine the sensitivity of yields to monsoon rainfall and temperature. Rice, the dominant crop in the region, is the least land efficient for providing iron and most sensitive to rainfall variability. Sorghum and maize provide high nutritional yields while small millet is most resilient to climate variability. Price incentives are strong for rice. No single crop is superior for all objectives in this region. Instead, understanding which crops, or combinations of crops, are most suitable requires identifying household-, community-, and region-specific priorities coupled with empirical analysis that considers multiple objectives.