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Pros And Cons Of Mixed Farming

by Jacquiline Nakandi
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Mixed farming has to do with the planting of crops and rearing of animals for different purposes. It can be coffee, maize and animals, for example.

Advantages

  • It adds to the income of the farmer since he has many commodities to sell. Those who practice mixed farming never run out of business.
  • It is a form of assurance. If there are no sales from crops, there will be sales from the animals. Mixed farming ensures income throughout the year. For example, while most seasonal crops like maize and beans are harvested between August and September and between January and February, one can have piglets, goats eggs, and chicken for the rest of the year.
  • Land that is not good for crop cultivation can be used for rearing or housing animals, which ensures maximum and wise use of land.
  • Animal droppings can easily be transferred to the farmland to add to the fertility of the soil. This is why if a farmer is keeping chicken, he should also supplement the venture by growing vegetables or bananas, for example.
  • In some instances, farmers keeping fish construct chicken houses above the fish ponds. This is because chicken droppings make good feeds for fish. The process is called Aquaponics.

Disadvantages

  • One of the disadvantages lies in the control and management of the farm. There are many losses incurred as a result of mixed farmers being overwhelmed. For example, the animals can sometimes feed on the planted crops if care is not taken.
  • It divides the attention of the farmer. Unless the farmer is well prepared, they might fail to manage all the enterprises.
  • Some of the enterprises on the farm may be making losses without the knowledge of the farmer, since they may be masked by other profitable ventures.
  • The farmer needs a lot of money to take care of the farm.

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