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Integrating poultry into an organic vegetable cropping system: benefits, challenges, and considerations

Commonly researched and implemented methods of crop-livestock integration in the United States include grazing livestock on cover crops, rotational grazing of permanent pasture, and grazing livestock on crop residues such as corn or wheat. A less space-intensive alternative for vegetable growers is the use of chickens introduced into a vegetable rotation. One of the advantages of vegetable-poultry integrated systems is the opportunity for an organic producer to integrate chicken production in the farm’s existing cropping system, where chickens provide natural fertilizer for crops. The addition of chickens, along with the already implemented cover crops, could move organic growers closer to their goals of relying upon on-farm produced inputs, or those produced nearby, and meet crop and livestock needs for feed and soil nutrition.

Pages / Length: 5
Publication Date: 11/2020

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