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CHANGE FROM CONVENTIONAL TO ORGANIC RICE FARMING SYSTEM: BIOPHYSICAL AND SOCIOECONOMIC REASONS

Sukristiyonubowo,  Wiwik H,  Sofyan A,  Benito H.P, and S. De Neve

Participatory Rural Appraisal was carried out in three sub districts namely; Gondang, Kedawung, and Sambirejo of Sragen District, Indonesia in October, 2008. These sites represented three rice farming namely conventional, low external input called semi organic and fully organic rice farming. The aim was to study biophysical and socioeconomic reasons of conversion from conventional to organic rice farming systems. Several methods of participatory rural appraisal were applied, namely historical land use, Venn diagram, field monitoring and ranking and scoring, besides direct interview in the field and visit farmers house. The results showed improving soil fertility, better selling price and income, better and healthier rice quality and less pest and diseases attack were the most benefits obtained from the conversion to semi and fully organic rice farming. Improving both chemical and physical soil fertility were put in the first and second rank for fully organic rice farming group, while better income and improving soil properties were for the semi organic rice farming group. The economic benefits were about 12,300,000 IDR (1,367 USD) and 14,400,000 IDR (1,600 USD) ha-1 season-1 with B/C ratio 4.5 and 6.0 for semi and fully organic rice farming, respectively. These systems are socially accepted encouraging communal works.

Keywords:  Rice farming, conventional, low external input, fully organic, participatory rural appraisal

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