Finding the Right Balance: Exploring Forest and Agriculture Landscapes

SNV: Richard McNally, Adrian Enright and Hans Smit

This paper highlights the need to better understand the relationship between agriculture and forests; in particular the need to better understand where and how agriculture is produced, as well as the types of activities that need to be introduced to support this sector. Given the growing commitments from companies and governments to no deforestation in supply chains, it is more important than ever to fully understand this forest-agriculture relationship and to prescribe appropriate solutions. The authors propose a basic siting tool that, when applied, can help to understand this relationship and identify pro-poor and sustainable solutions across landscapes. The tool helps identify the suitability of different agricultural commodities across a landscape, which includes potential risks to forest conversion. The initial spatial assessment will allow trade-offs to be examined and help in deciding priority sites and potential approaches to balance forest and agriculture in the landscape.

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