World Journal of Environmental Biosciences
World Journal of Environmental Biosciences
2023 Volume 12 Issue 1

A Sustainable Way for Integrated Farming System: A Case Study on Bellary District of Karnataka, India


Haripriya Holachi1, Harsha Tandoti Sathyanarayanaroa2, Raghu Ram Achar3, Vadiraj Kalya Tulasidas1*


1Department of Environmental Science, JSS Academy of Higher Education & Research, Mysore- 570015, India.

2Department of Environmental Science, Karnataka State Open University, Muktagangotri, Mysore- 570015, India.

3Department of Biochemistry, JSS Academy of Higher Education & Research, Mysore- 570015, India.


Sustainable development is a concept that strives to gain economic progress and to make developments in agriculture that stays for long without harming the environment. while conserving the soil biodiversity and environmental prolonged value. It also serves as a framework for integrating environmental regulations with development initiatives. Recently, there has been a pressing need to embrace greater sustainable farming methods, and a logical evaluation method is required to identify innovative management options. One kind of environmentally-friendly farming that has recently emerged is the integrated crop-livestock farming system. The importance of an integrated farm and livestock system for sustainable development, and the fact that integrated crop and livestock systems have been a foundation of agriculture for hundreds of years, imply a diverse range of integrated ecological, biophysical, and socioeconomic conditions. Sometimes it is difficult to maintain sustainable agriculture in dry areas like Bellary. Adopting an appropriate integrated agricultural system model is very important to achieve sustainability in lowland rice cultivation in the Tungabhadra project located in Karnataka. Continued rice cultivation and practice in the region have resulted in resource deprivation and condensed and decreased yields. The diminution of hereditary soil assets, the development of nuisance and pests scenarios like brown plant hopper, and the problem of weeds were also noticed.

Keywords: The integrated farming system, Sustainable farming, Soil biodiversity, Organic, Livestock, Dairy



Dryland ecosystems cover over three billion hectares and they are the homeland of 2.5 billion people, accounting for 41 percent of the world's land-living zone and further than one-third of their population. Dryland areas and their associated cultivated production arrangements are extremely important due to their size and current intense uses. Dryland ecosystems, for example, contribute around 40 percent of the overall diet grain and pulses output and back two-thirds of the cattle population in India, where this study is focused (Haileslassie et al., 2016). Developing an integrated farming system requires the employment of appropriate technologies. It is vital to consider how to assist farmers in improving the quality of their crops as a tool in integrated farming. Technology must also be regarded as a means of overcoming and balancing the drop in food production caused by the loss of agricultural land. Because of technology, some countries with limited land can still solve their food problems (Ansar, 2018). We have been able to design a framework for an alternative development model that will increase the viability of small and marginal farming operations in comparison to large larger ones in which the total credit goes to the integrated farming system. The phrase “Integrated farming system” is frequently used to refer to a more integrated farming method when compared to monoculture farming. It also goes by the name “Integrated Biosystem” and it describes an agriculture system that combines the production of fish and animal husbandry or livestock and crops (Soni et al., 2014). Long-term agricultural research has been carried out in many regions of the world in addition to developing an integrated system, and in certain cases, economic and environmental observations with the conventional method have been made. Integrated farming has proven to be equally profitable in the long run (Holland, 2020)

Sustainable development pointers try to quantify sustainable progress as a whole, captivating interest in the account of the diverse and combined farming type of knowledge. Sustainable progress or development is an idea that strives to continue financial and commercial improvement and development while conserving the environment's longstanding price and value. It also serves as an agenda for integrating environmental regulations with development initiatives (Osak & Hartono, 2016). Integrated farming systems are a production approach that involves merging yield, cattle farming, besides Forestry practices in a similar area in a variety of ways.

  • integration of crop and animal husbandry
  • crops and forestry
  • animal husbandry and forestry
  • crop, livestock, and forestry

The decision on which to adopt will be influenced by the region's economic and geographical characteristics, as well as financial incentives, farming infrastructure and farmer capabilities, production strategy, and cultural factors (Oliveira et al., 2018) Sustainability should not be viewed as a destination, but rather as a goal, similar to liberty or equality, that cannot be achieved yet leads to positive change. In a development framework, such a concept is especially useful in dealing with concerns of uncertainty and risk (Gibon et al., 1999).

According to the existing situation in the country, the area under cultivation may decline even more by 2030. The fact that 80 percent of agricultural families in India are classified as small or marginal farmers adds to the difficulty. Efficiency enhancement could be a critical answer for guaranteeing nutrition and food safety for a huge population. This necessitates the adoption of contemporary agronomical practices and expertise that increase the productivity of traditional agricultural systems. IFS is defined as a crop and livestock enterprise that contains at least a minimum of two discrete yet rationally symbiotic sections. The IFS is defined as an aquaculture system that includes animals and uses fresh animal waste to feed fish. The situation deteriorates in marginalized and less integrated areas, which are home to the majority of the poor. Agriculture's and rural poverty alleviation's futures are dependent on how we provide food, nutrition, and sustainable livelihoods via integrated and sustainable family farming that is resistant to open market volatility and climate unpredictability (Dasgupta et al., 2015). Climate plays a vital effect in crop productivity in India, especially when the soil is dry. Dryland accounts for almost 62 percent of a country's total cultivated area of 142 million hectares, accounting for 42 percent of overall food output (Mynavathi & Jayanthi, 2015).

Objectives of integrated farming

The main objective of integrated farming systems is to develop technically possible and economically successful farming system models for irrigated, rainfed, hilly, and coastal locations by integrating cropping to produce income and employment from small and marginal farmland. Some main objectives are listed below (Chauhan et al., 2016)

  • Improve efficiency
  • Increase on-farm biodiversity by regulating nutrient and material flows.
  • Eliminate the odors associated with some animal operations.
  • Through natural cropping system management, we may control insect pests, illnesses, and weed populations under control and at a low level of intensity.
  • Reduces the use of chemical and harmful fertilizers, as well as some other dangerous agrochemicals and insecticides, to offer society pollution-free, hale and hearty crop production, and a pollution-free environment.
  • Maximizing the productivity of all component firms to give a more consistent and predictable income

Integrated crop-livestock-fish farming system

Rice and fish integrated Farming

Asia has been the birthplace of the integrated farming system of fish band rice farming, which has flourished since the dawn of civilization, especially as human communities began to move inland from river banks. Even though there are some successfully adopted fish and rice integrated farming system techniques in Asian continent countries, like India and China, the concept of agricultural-based pairing up, and a systematic combination of cultivation, aquaculture, and animal husbandry is still not widely used in these areas and yet to educate people (The paddy-field wetland is ideal for breeding and feeding a variety of fish (Figure 1). Most spawnings in rice fields produce glue-like eggs that are generally arranged on green plants to provide extra oxygen and nutrition designed for maturing embryos (AL-Kattan et al., 2019; Al-Rejaboo & Jalaluldeen, 2019; Falya et al., 2021). However, shallow water net constructors and spawners breed in paddy fields under ideal conditions) (Paramesh et al., 2022).


Figure 1. Coconut and pearl millet with chicken


The ability to adopt an appropriate integrated agricultural system model is critical for achieving sustainability in the low-land rice of Karnataka's Tungabhadra project. The ongoing practice of rice-rice sequence in this area has resulted in resource degradation and yield loss. Agricultural Research Station, Siruguppa, Karnataka, undertook a field experiment in 2004-05 and 2005-06 to determine the relative performance of various rice-fish-poultry models. Over time, the integrated farming system had higher system production and net returns, according to the average. The study concluded that rice-fish-poultry may be successfully used under canal irrigation in the Tungabhadra Project area of Karnataka. Rice-fish–poultry was the best among the different models and models (Channabasavanna & Biradar, 2007). IFS has a method of Rice and fish farming and it plays a significant part in producing more nutrition, as the cohesive agricultural scheme outperforms rice culture or rice monoculture in rapports of source consumption, variability, efficiency, and together the excellence and amount of the products manufactured (Figure 2). Furthermore, there are several substantial barriers to the implementation of this farming system, including a deficiency of mechanical expertise among farmers and flood and drought concerns. This type of farming benefits should reach the people widely, especially the millions of rural people who are not aware of this type of farming (Ahmed, & Garnett, 2011).

Figure 2. Rice fields in siruguppa



Crop/livestock rotations are designed to maintain topsoil and organic material, promote healthy soil biology, control crop weeds and diseases, and extract water from the subsoil. It will be vital to blend crops and cattle spatially. From mixed agricultural and livestock production systems to specialized and concentrated crop production, land use is rapidly changing (Bradley, 2009). crop or yield rotation including grassland provides feed for animals, which later, in turn, provides organic fertilizers for tilling the land, increasing farm income profitability and stability (fewer inputs used and market diversification), and increase sustainable development (livestock manure recycling, soil nutrient, and carbon capture and storage) (Veysset et al., 2014) Over the last few decades, agriculture has progressed from natural and traditional cultivation to economically productive and industrial farming practices. Increased amounts of external farm inputs have intensified environmental issues such as nutrient leaching, pesticide pollution, soil depletion, and eroding. A resource-conserving, socially supporting, viable and competitive, and the environmentally sound integrated crop-livestock system is possible. Maintaining grassland and dairy farming in less favored places, as well as keeping the landscape open, requires significant effort. Various strategies must be examined and tailored to the unique circumstances and requirements (Biala et al., 2007).

Tripathi and Rathi found several current farming system models, including

  • crops + dairy (Figure 3)
  • crops + dairy + horticulture + goats (Figure 4)
  • crop + goats + horticulture
  • crop + dairy + vegetable
  • vegetable + fish and crop + dairy + other animals (Table 1).

Farm income is slowly declining due to shrinking land holdings and continued non-integrated agriculture. Crops, dairy, fisheries, poultry, mushrooms, horticulture, sericulture, and other agricultural components must be integrated into a single farm unit to preserve farm income and also for sustainable agriculture (Pervez et al., 2021).