Organic farming is increasing in Europe. However, the production of cereals and protein crops (pea, bean etc.) needs to be increased in organic farming to fulfil the requirement for organic feed and food in Europe from 2005. Intercropping, which is the simultaneous growing of two or more crop species on the same land, can contribute to this overall goal. The objective of this multidisciplinary project is to determine the potential for intercropping in European organic farming. In field pot and on-farm experiments in four European countries we will determine: the intercrop yield advantage and stability, new intercropping designs, the multiple nutrient use, monitor effects on weeds and diseases, and determine the effects of intercropping on the quality of products for food and feed. A simulation model will be developed to model grain legume-cereal intercrops. The project is expected to contribute to an increased use of intercropping and the associated beneficial effects, such as environmentally friendly production, ecological management of pest and weeds and healthy products.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
RG6 6AT Reading / Silchester