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Combined used of three whole farm simulation tools for the design of innovative production strategie

Sempore A.W., Andrieu N., Le Gal P.Y.. 2013. In : EAAP. Book of Abstracts of the 64th annual meeting of the European federation of animal science, Nantes, France, 26-30 August, 2013. Wageningen : Wageningen Academic Publishers, p. 282-282. EAAP Annual Conference. 64, 2013-08-26/2013-08-30, Nantes (France).

Sub-Saharan Africa is facing a sharp increase in the number of cattle. This is associated with the increase in the cultivated area that has led to a higher pressure on natural rangelands, a reduction in the availability of fodder for animals, and consequently a decrease in animal production. In this context farmers have to find strategies allowing improving livestock production systems through better planning of farming activities. The objective of this paper is to assess the complementarity between three applications at the farm scale to help farmers developing innovative production strategies. This study was conducted in the western zone of Burkina Faso with 9 farmers planning to improve their production strategy. After a first training phase of farmers on modeling, we used sequentially three models: a linear programming model (Optimcik?da), a spreadsheet model simulating the technico-economical performances of the farm (Cik?da), and a rule-based model simulating the impact of different strategies on long-term performances of the farm (Simflex). The linear programming model was first used with the farmer in order to assess the distance between his project and the optimal allocation of resources allowing maximizing farm income, calculated by the model. Cik?da model was then used with the farmer to simulate the impact on the performance of the farm of strategies that rose from the previous discussion process. Simflex was used to assess the sensitivity of the strategy selected by the farmer to the variability of his climatic and economic environment. Optimcik?da model allowed farmers to design their cropping pattern while Cik?da helped refining the plan under various technical and economic assessments. Simflex allowed farmers to improve their decision thresholds in relation to climate risk and the variability of input prices. The articulation of three whole-farm modeling tools is a novel method for the conception of innovative strategies.

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