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Understanding mountain soils : a contribution from mountain areas to the International Year of Soils 2015

  • Martínez Palacios, A.
  • Prat, Christian
  • Ríos Patrón, E.
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2015
Horizon / Pleins textes
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In Mexico, 45 percent of the country suffers from land degradation, 12 percent of which, or some 23 million ha, are degraded due to water erosion. In Michoacán, a state in west-central Mexico, the figure rises to 27 percent. A study of the soil in Michoacán determined that overgrazing was a cause of degradation and a strategy was drawn up to promote cropping of agave, which is used in production of a high-value alcoholic drink as well as in medicines and cosmetics. The agave’s high value would mean farmers would need fewer cattle. While waiting for the agave to mature, the farmers intercrop trees, plants and grasses that produce marketable products and women earn income in greenhouses by selling small agaves from the seeds they have collected. This project, which started in 2011, is still ongoing.

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