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Diversified Farming Systems in Indian Agriculture: A Sustainable Approach to Enhance Productivity and Resilience

Indian agriculture faces formidable challenges, including climate change, resource depletion, and diminishing productivity, jeopardizing the livelihoods of small and marginal farmers who constitute over 86% of the farming community. This paper advocates for a paradigm shift towards diversified farming systems to address these multifaceted issues. The study emphasizes the integration of crops with complementary enterprises such as dairy, sheep, poultry, horticulture, and fisheries. Diversification offers numerous advantages, including risk reduction, resilience to climate change, soil health improvement, biodiversity conservation, and cultural value preservation. The research analyzes various farming systems in different regions of India, demonstrating that integration leads to higher net income and employment generation. Despite potential challenges like limited market demand and infrastructure issues, the benefits of diversified farming outweigh the drawbacks. This paper underscores the importance of tailoring diversified farming systems to be socially acceptable, environmentally friendly, and economically viable, promoting sustainability and contributing to the well-being of farmers and the broader community.