Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment

Vol 1, Issue 3&4,2003
Online ISSN: 1459-0263
Print ISSN: 1459-0255

A note on the response by smallholder farmers to soil nutrient depletion in the East African highlands


Chris A. Shisanya

Recieved Date: 2002-11-12, Accepted Date: 2003-07-11


Agriculture provides a major share of national income and export earnings in many developing countries while ensuring food security, income and employment to a large proportion of the population. Many people in developing countries rely on the land to sustain their livelihoods. Land may also inspire cultural and spiritual values, and more generally strengthen a sense of belonging. Fertile, good quality soils are an essential component for farming. Soil is a living system of organisms reacting with organic and inorganic matter. The soil quality comprises a range of chemical, physical and biological factors, which together affect the productive potential of the land. For our purposes, soil degradation can be defined as a permanent decline in the rate at which land yields products that are useful for sustaining livelihoods. Examples of soil degradation processes include erosion, declining soil organic matter, soil nutrient depletion, compaction, acidification, salinisation and soil pollution. In this research note, I examine the response by smallholder farmers in Eastern Africa to soil nutrient depletion using locally available resources.


Farming, ecology, soil fertility, agricultural practices

Journal: Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment
Year: 2003
Volume: 1
Issue: 3&4
Category: Environment
Pages: 247-250

Full text for Subscribers

Note to users

The requested document is freely available only to subscribers/registered users with an online subscription to the Journal of Food, Agriculture & Environment. If you have set up a personal subscription to this title please enter your user name and password. All abstracts are available for free.

Article purchasing

If you like to purchase this specific document such as article, review or this journal issue, contact us. Specify the title of the article or review, issue, number, volume and date of the publication. Software and compilation, Science & Technology, all rights reserved. Your use of this website details or service is governed by terms of use. Authors are invited to check from time to time news or information.

Purchase this Article:   20 Purchase PDF Order Reprints for 15

Share this article :