IMPACT ASSESSMENT OF THE ADOPTION OF CACTUS PEAR IN ALLEY CROPPING IN LIVESTOCK-CEREAL SYSTEMS IN ARID AND SEMIARID TUNISIA THE CASE OF ZOGHMAR, CENTRAL TUNISIA
In the low-rainfall areas (annual average of 200-350 mm) of Maghreb and West Asia, small ruminant production is the main economic activity. Small ruminant production contributes to the rural income and national economies through the production of meat, milk, pelts, leather and wool. With the increase of small ruminant populations due to demand and political incentives, the area has experienced a drastic reduction of rangeland which is used to cover feed requirements. This has lead to an increasing dependence of farmers on market fluctuations. In this context, cactus represents an interesting production option for farmers as an animal feed while reducing soil erosion. An innovative solution has been to introduce varieties of spineless cactus in alley cropping. The results of an ex-post impact assessment of the system revealed a great interest in the technology from the plot to the environmental and economical levels. An important increase of total biomass on eroded marginal land and a reduction of total feed cost, approximately 13.2% per farm, was seen.
Alary, V., Nefzaoui, A., Ben Salem, H. and Chouki, S. (2006). IMPACT ASSESSMENT OF THE ADOPTION OF CACTUS PEAR IN ALLEY CROPPING IN LIVESTOCK-CEREAL SYSTEMS IN ARID AND SEMIARID TUNISIA THE CASE OF ZOGHMAR, CENTRAL TUNISIA. Acta Hortic. 728, 279-288
Opuntia, animal feed, economic impact, natural resources