Cropping systems intensification and diversification: risk, vulnerability and adaptation in southwest coastal Bangladesh

Article


Jamal, Md., Kristiansen, Paul, Kabi, Md. Jahangir and de Bruyn, Lisa Lobry. 2022. "Cropping systems intensification and diversification: risk, vulnerability and adaptation in southwest coastal Bangladesh." International Journal of Sustainable Development and World Ecology. 29 (8), pp. 677-694. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504509.2022.2073615
Article Title

Cropping systems intensification and diversification: risk, vulnerability and adaptation in southwest coastal Bangladesh

ERA Journal ID3264
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsJamal, Md., Kristiansen, Paul, Kabi, Md. Jahangir and de Bruyn, Lisa Lobry
Journal TitleInternational Journal of Sustainable Development and World Ecology
Journal Citation29 (8), pp. 677-694
Number of Pages677-694
Year2022
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Place of PublicationUnited Kingdom
ISSN1350-4509
1745-2627
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1080/13504509.2022.2073615
Web Address (URL)https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13504509.2022.2073615
Abstract

Delta ecosystems are vulnerable to climate change from rising temperatures and altered rainfall patterns, as well as further threats from salinity and erosion due to coastline exposure. Smallholder farmers in deltas are adapting to these risks through cropping systems intensification and diversification, but it is unclear which cropping options offer better profitability and less risk and what transformational support is needed. Using qualitative and quantitative primary field data from southwest coastal Bangladesh, this research analysed risk perceptions and adaptation responses and evaluated the profitability of seven cropping systems. Rainfall anomalies, extreme weather events, and seasonal price fluctuations were core risks for farmers. Risk management strategies included adjusting sowing/transplanting dates, changing crop cultivars, increasing chemical applications, storing irrigation water, and seeking market updates. The dominant systems (rice/rice/fallow, rice/fallow/fallow) had the lowest profitability, while systems with vegetables had the highest profitability. The risk analysis estimated that the dominant systems would incur losses every three years and rice/watermelon/fallow every eight years, but vegetable- or jute-based systems’ risk was negligible. However, expanding vegetable-based systems is constrained by higher input costs, lack of capital, labour-intensive practices, market access, and persistent environmental risks. Therefore, multiple strategies are required by public and commercial actors at multiple levels to support smallholders to promote sustainable trade-offs between diverse risks, short-term profitability, and sustainable managing labour, capital, and inputs. The findings highlight the need for agricultural policies and intervention programs to address production technologies, market access, financial services, and extension and training for production and agribusiness skills.

KeywordsClimate change; market access; profitability; transformation; support; salinity
ANZSRC Field of Research 20204101. Climate change impacts and adaptation
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Byline AffiliationsUniversity of New England
Ministry of Agriculture, Bangladesh
School of Business
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