Advertisement

Environmental Management

, Volume 48, Issue 2, pp 351–364 | Cite as

Impacts of Public Policies and Farmer Preferences on Agroforestry Practices in Kerala, India

  • S. GuillermeEmail author
  • B. M. Kumar
  • A. Menon
  • C. Hinnewinkel
  • E. Maire
  • A. V. Santhoshkumar
Article

Abstract

Agroforestry systems are fundamental features of the rural landscape of the Indian state of Kerala. Yet these mixed species systems are increasingly being replaced by monocultures. This paper explores how public policies on land tenure, agriculture, forestry and tree growing on private lands have interacted with farmer preferences in shaping land use dynamics and agroforestry practices. It argues that not only is there no specific policy for agroforestry in Kerala, but also that the existing sectoral policies of land tenure, agriculture, and forestry contributed to promoting plantation crops, even among marginal farmers. Forest policies, which impose restrictions on timber extraction from farmers’ fields under the garb of protecting natural forests, have often acted as a disincentive to maintaining tree-based mixed production systems on farmlands. The paper argues that public policies interact with farmers’ preferences in determining land use practices.

Keywords

Agrobiodiversity Farmers’ perception Farming practices Trees outside forest Landscape dynamics 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This work was carried out with the financial support of the Agence Nationale de la Recherche under the « Programme Agriculture et Développement Durable » , project ANR-06-PADD-014, POPULAR, the Indo-French Cultural Exchange Program of FMSH—Paris, and the International Cooperation Projects of CNRS.

References

  1. Bourdillon TF (1893) Report on the forests of Travancore, Travancore Government Press, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, IndiaGoogle Scholar
  2. Department of Economics and Statistics (DES) (2006) Agricultural statistics 2005–2006, Kerala. Government of Kerala. Available at http://www.ecostatkerala.org/agristat/agristat.htm, accessed 20 December 2009
  3. Dhanya B, Viswanath S, Purushothman S (2010) Sandal (Santalum album L.) conservation in southern India: a review of policies and their impacts. Journal of Tropical Agriculture 48(1–2):1–10Google Scholar
  4. FSI (2005) Land Use Statistics, Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India (available at http://www.fsi.nic.in/sfr2005/Chapter%208/Kerala.pdf; accessed 6 November 2010)
  5. George KT, Haridasan V, Sreekumar B (1988) Role of government and structural changes in rubber plantation industry. Economic and Political Weekly 26(11):158–166Google Scholar
  6. Guillerme S (1999) Pratiques agroforestières et stratégies paysannes au Kérala (Inde du Sud) dynamique rurale en contexte de forte pression démographique. Thèse de Doctorat de l’Université Paris I-Panthéon-Sorbonne, FranceGoogle Scholar
  7. Jose D, Shanmugaratnam N (1993) Traditional homegardens of Kerala: a sustainable human ecosystem. Agroforestry Systems 24:203–213CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. KFRI (2005) State Biodiversity strategy and action plan (SBSAP) for Kerala. Kerala Forest Research Institute, Peechi, Kerala, IndiaGoogle Scholar
  9. Kjosavik DJ, Shanmugaratnam N (2007) Property rights dynamics and indigenous communities in highland Kerala, South India: an institutional-historical perspective. Modern Asian Studies 41(6):1183–1260CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Kumar BM (2006) Carbon sequestration potential of tropical homegardens. In: Kumar BM, Nair PKR (eds) Tropical homegardens: a time-tested example of sustainable agroforestry. Springer Science, The Netherlands, pp 185–204Google Scholar
  11. Kumar BM (2007) Agroforestry systems and practices of Kerala. In: Puri S, Panwar Pankaj (eds) Agroforestry systems and practices of India. New India Publishing Agency, New Delhi, India, pp 459–483Google Scholar
  12. Kumar BM, Nair PKR (2004) The enigma of tropical homegardens. Agroforestry Systems 61:135–152CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Kumar BM, Peter KV (2002) Woody perennials in the farmlands of Kerala: policy and legal aspects. In: Mohanan C, Chacko KC, Seethalakshmi KK, Sankar S, Renuka C, Muralidharan EM, Sharma JK (eds) Proceedings of the national workshop on policy and legal issues in cultivation and utilization of bamboo, rattan and forest trees in private and community lands. Kerala Forest Research Institute, Peechi, Kerala, India, pp 166–170Google Scholar
  14. Kumar BM, Takeuchi K (2009) Agroforestry in the Western Ghats of peninsular India and the Satoyama landscapes of Japan: a comparison of two sustainable land use systems. Sustainability Science 4:215–232CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kumar BM, Babu KVS, Sasidharan NK, Mathew T (1992) Agroforestry practices of central Kerala in a socio-economic milieu. In: Bhasha SC, Muraleedharan PK, Seethalakshmy KK, Sankaran KV, Nair KKN (eds) Proceedings of the seminar on socio-economic research in forestry. Kerala Forest Research Institute, Peechi, India, pp 209–220Google Scholar
  16. Kumar BM, George SJ, Chinnamani S (1994) Diversity, structure and standing stock of wood in the homegardens of Kerala in peninsular India. Agroforestry Systems 25:243–262CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Lambin EF, Turner BL, Geist HJ, Agbola SB, Angelson A, Bruce JW, Coomes OT, Dirzo R, Fischer G, Folke C, George PS, Homewood K, Imbernon J, Leemans R, Li X, Moran EF, Mortimer M, Ramakrishnan PS, Richards JF, Skanes H, Steffen W, Stone GD, Svedin U, Veldkamp TA, Vogel C, Xu J (2001) The causes of land- use and land- cover change: moving beyond the myths. Global Environmental Change 11:261–269CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Menon AS (1962) Kerala District Gazetteers, Kozhikode, India. Government of Kerala, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, IndiaGoogle Scholar
  19. Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) (2000) Land use statistics at a glance 1996–97. MoA, Government of India, New Delhi, IndiaGoogle Scholar
  20. Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) (2001) Agricultural census 2000–2001. Available at http://agcensus.nic.in/cendata/StateT1table2.aspx, accessed 19 October 2009
  21. Mohanan C, Chacko KC, Seethalakshmi KK, Sankar S, Renuka C, Muralidharan EM, Sharma JK (eds) (2002) Proceedings of the National Workshop on policy and legal issues in cultivation and utilization of bamboo, rattan and forest trees in private and community lands. Kerala Forest Research Institute, Peechi, Kerala, IndiaGoogle Scholar
  22. Nair GC (1911) Wynad, its peoples and traditions. Higginbotham & Co. Services, Madras, IndiaGoogle Scholar
  23. Nair PKR (2008) Agroecosystem management in the 21st century: it is time for a paradigm shift. Journal of Tropical Agriculture 46(1–2):1–12Google Scholar
  24. Olivier de Sardan JP (1995) La politique du terrain. Enquête 1:71–112 (Fr)Google Scholar
  25. Ouseph KP (2002) Why farmers do not grow agroforestry trees? An analysis of timber and fuel wood market in Kerala. Research Report—Part B (Unpublished), Institute of Forest Genetics and Tree Breeding, Coimbatore, IndiaGoogle Scholar
  26. Peyre A, Guidal A, Wiersum KF, Bongers F (2006) Homegarden Dynamics in Kerala, India. In: Kumar BM, Nair PKR (eds) Tropical homegardens: a time-tested example of sustainable agroforestry. Springer, The Netherlands, pp 87–103Google Scholar
  27. Randhawa MS (1980) A history of India agriculture, vol 2 eighth to eighteenth century. Indian Council of Agricultural Research, New Delhi, IndiaGoogle Scholar
  28. Seabrook L, McAlpine C, Fensham RJ (2008) What influences farmers to keep trees? A case study from the Brigalow Belt Queensland Australia. Landscape and Urban Planning 84:266–281CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Ward BS, Conner CE (1863, reprint 1994) Memoir of the survey of the Travancore and Cochin states, vol 1. Kerala Gazetteers Department, Government of Kerala, reprinted with biographical sketch of Lts. Ward and Conner, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, IndiaGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Guillerme
    • 1
    • 5
    Email author
  • B. M. Kumar
    • 1
    • 2
  • A. Menon
    • 3
  • C. Hinnewinkel
    • 4
    • 5
  • E. Maire
    • 1
    • 5
  • A. V. Santhoshkumar
    • 2
  1. 1.UMR 5602—CNRS, GEODE (Geography of the Environment)Université Toulouse IIToulouse cedex 9France
  2. 2.College of ForestryKerala Agricultural UniversityThrissurIndia
  3. 3.Madras Institute of Development Studies (MIDS)ChennaiIndia
  4. 4.Université de Lille 1, Laboratoire TVESVilleneuve d’AscqFrance
  5. 5.French Institute of PondicherryPuducherryIndia

Personalised recommendations