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Soil health assessment and maintenance in Central and South-Central Brazil

Code: 9781786764201
Ieda C. Mendes, EMBRAPA Cerrados, Brazil; Cássio A. Tormena, State University of Maringá, Brazil; Maurício R. Cherubin, University of São Paulo, Brazil; and Douglas L. Karlen, USDA-ARS, USA

Chapter synopsis: Brazil has evolved from a food-insecure country in the early 1970s to one of the most important food producers and exporters in the world. Production has increased steadily and productivity gains have fostered a significant land-saving effect. However, wide variations in the landscape, soils, climate and plant diversity present challenges in applying soil health principles for enhanced management practices. These challenges have been overcome by the application of conservation agriculture (CA), an integrated, holistic farming system that improves soil functioning and consequently crop growth and yield. Intensification of agriculture through integrated crop, livestock and forest systems has also had an important role in the last ten years. This chapter outlines several practices, evaluations and monitoring strategies being used to ensure that soil health is being maintained or improved rather than degraded by the more intensive, economically driven management practices.

DOI: 10.19103/AS.2017.0033.35
Table of contents 1 Introduction 2 Agriculture in Brazil 3 New frontiers in Brazilian CA 4 Indicators for SH assessments in Brazil 5 Tillage effects on SH 6 SI effects on SH indicators 7 Sugarcane effects on SH 8 Future trends 9 Summary and conclusions 10 Where to look for further information 11 References

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