- Volume 31 Issue 4
This study attempts to examine farmers' preference and perception towards cropland agroforestry (CAF) and its economic benefits in Bangladesh. It surveys 84 farmers of two sub-districts named Manirampur and Bagherpara under Jessore district of Bangladesh to address the study objectives with the help of a questionnaire during the period of June to July 2013. We follow a multistage random sampling procedure for selecting respondents of the survey. A total of 27 plant species under 19 families are identified in the surveyed crop fields, among which 11 are tree species and 1 is shrub from 8 families and 15 species are agricultural crops from 11 families. According to the survey findings, most of the farmers prefer multipurpose tree species like Swietenia macrophylla (67 percent), Phoenix sylvestris (48 percent), Mangifera indica (48 percent) and Cocos nucifera (43 percent). We also find that Curcuma longa (92 percent), Oryza spp. (56 percent), Solanum melongena (43 percent) and Amorphophallus campanulatus (33 percent) are the available agriculture crops which are grown in association with trees in the study area. The surveyed farmers report that they practice CAF to get fuel wood, fodder, juice, fruit and food for family consumption and revenue earnings. About 76 percent of the surveyed farmers endorse the existence of a positive interaction between trees and agriculture crops, while the rest 24 percent endorse the existence of a negative interaction between trees and agriculture crops. This study finds that CAF farmers on an average earn US$ 1,410 per farm per year and the yearly average revenue difference between CAF and non-cropland agroforestry (NCAF) farmers is US$ 214. Overall, CAF needs to develop through scientific intervention in the study area to conserve the biodiversity and to enhance farmers' sustainable livelihood.
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