WSU Tree Fruit Research & Extension Center

Organic & Integrated Tree Fruit Production

Sunday, September 23, 2018

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9334. Delane, R.J., P. Nelson and R.J. French. 1989. Roles of grain legumes in sustainable dryland cropping systems.. Journal of Australian Society of Agronomy, p. 181-196..
There is now clear consensus among most rural producers, scientists, bureaucrats and politicians that many of Australia's farming systems are unsustainable, using present methods. While broadacre agriculture has been considered by some to be technically sustainable, economic pressure placed on farmers due to declining terms of trade is indirectly responsible for the instability of many farming systems. The current awareness stems from irrefutable evidence that our crop and animal production methods have resulted in both dramatcic and insidious forms of land degradation. However, the sustainability of our farming systems has been questioned for some time, and at least three symposia dating from 1983 have dealt largely or wholly with this issue. Sustainable agriculture is now in vogue, so much so that one rural magazine now carries the slogan "Striving for Sustainable Agriculture" as its banner. And Australia now has a National Association for Sustainable Agriculture (NASAA). It should then be easy to define a sustainable farming system, particularly if the definition is restricted to cropping.

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