There is considerable world-wide interest in organic and other low input production systems because of the perceived benefits that they provide in terms of food quality, food safety and reduced environmental impact when compared with ‘conventional’ production systems. Crop production within low input systems provides a ‘challenge’ to farmers and crop scientists alike in determining how to use their knowledge of the interactions between the soil and plants, and plant pests and pathogens, to grow crops with sufficient yield and quality. The aim of this module is to provide an understanding of the production techniques employed within such systems. The course will focus on arable and horticultural crops but consideration will be given to livestock production within the context of a mixed farming system.
By the end of the module the student should be able to: understand the principles underlying organic and low input systems and have an appreciation of their history; understand the techniques that are used to maintain soil fertility without synthetic fertilisers and to grow marketable crops that are unaffected by pests and disease; demonstrate an ability to evaluate critically the environmental and other ‘benefits’ of growing crops in low input versus conventional production systems.
Lectures per module 21 x 1 hr; Seminars per module 1 x 3 hr; Farm visit 1 x 2hr
|Assessment group||Assessment name||Percentage|
|10 CATS (Module code: HR922-10)|
|A1 (Assessed work only)||2000 word written assignment||70%|
This module is available on the following courses: