Agroforestry for Livelihood Security in Agrarian Landscapes of the Padma Floodplain in Bangladesh
- 367 Downloads
In the Padma floodplain of Bangladesh, the traditional system of agriculture has become unsustainable due to high population growth. Mango-based agroforestry which has been practiced by the farmers since the 1990s, is a promising alternative and is considered as one of the few options to lift farmers out of poverty and improve livelihood security. This paper examines the potential of mango-based agroforestry to improve livelihoods, using data collected by rapid rural appraisal, farmer participatory research, stakeholder analysis and a farm household survey in six representative villages in the floodplain. Farmers with the least land were found to allocate a higher percentage of their land to agroforestry, and the increased income from agroforestry compared to other agricultural systems helps reduce relative poverty. This income maintains basic household needs, providing food security and fuelwood, and contributes to healthcare, housing and sanitation conditions, and meeting educational expenses.
KeywordsPopulation growth Sustainable land use Income generation Women empowerment
We wish to thank the Department of Sociology of the University of Rajshahi, CIFOR and the IC-SAAKTI Project for providing financial support for this research. We are also grateful to Professors Khan, Siddiquee and Hossain for their valuable advice and guidance. Many thanks are also given to the farmers at the field survey sites, who shared their precious time, thoughts and concerns, and even their sometimes scarce meals with us.
- Abedin MZ, Lai CK, Ali MO (eds) (1990) Homestead plantation and agroforestry in Bangladesh. Bangladesh Agricultural Research Council and Winrock International, DhakaGoogle Scholar
- Alam MK, Mohiuddin M, Basak SR (1996) Village trees of Bangladesh: diversity and economic aspects. Bangladesh J For Sci 25(2):21–36Google Scholar
- Alim A (1993) Agroforestry practices in Bangladesh. In: Mahat TBS (ed) Agroforestry training course module in Bangladesh. Bangladesh Agricultural Research Council, Dhaka, pp 21–29Google Scholar
- MacDicken KG, Vergara NT (1990) Agroforestry: classification and management. Wiley, New YorkGoogle Scholar
- Mai PT (1999) Socio-economic analysis of shifting cultivation versus agroforestry system in the upper stream of lower mekong watershed in Dak Lak province. M.A thesis in Economics of Development. College of Economics, National University-HCMC, Viet Nam and Institute of Social Study (ISS), RotterdamGoogle Scholar
- Rahman SA, Rahman MF, Codilan AL, Farhana KM (2007) Analysis of the economic benefits from systematic improvements to shifting cultivation and its evolution towards stable continuous agroforestry in the upland of eastern Bangladesh. Int For Rev 9(1):536–547Google Scholar
- Rahman SA, Groot WD, Snelder DJ (2008) Exploring the agroforestry adoption gap: financial and socioeconomics of litchi-based agroforestry by smallholders in Rajshahi (Bangladesh). In: Snelder DJ, Lasco RD (eds) Smallholder tree growing for rural development and environmental services: lessons from Asia. Springer, The Netherlands, pp 227–244Google Scholar
- Siddiqui MA, Khan NA (1999) Floristic composition and socio-economic aspects of rural homestead forestry in Chittagong: a case study. Bangladesh J For Sci 28(1):94–101Google Scholar
- UNDP (United Nations Development Programme) (2010) Human development report 2010. Palgrave Macmillan, New YorkGoogle Scholar