Agroecological Principles for Sustainable Agriculture
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Agroecology is an applied science, adapting ecological concepts and principles to the design and management of sustainable agroecosystems and providing a framework for assessing the performance of agroecosystems (Altieri, 1995). When fully developed, agroecology does more than inform the selection and use of alternative practices; it helps farmers fashion and maintain agroecosystems that have minimal dependence on expensive chemical and energy inputs. Agricultural systems are supported by interactions and synergies between and among biological components that enable these systems to sponsor their own soil fertility, productivity enhancement and crop protection (Altieri and Rosset, 1995).