Agriculture is the backbone if most of developing countries like Pakistan. Agriculture is playing a central role Pakistan economy. According to fiscal year 2016, this is second biggest sector which contribute 21 percent in GDP, and remain largest employer absorbing 42.3 percent of total labor force of country. Most of the rural population is depend on agriculture approximately 62 percent rural population linked directly or indirectly with the agriculture. And their livelihood depends on it. Agriculture sector is sub divided into four SUB components Crop, Live Stock, Forestry and fishing. Livestock’s have the highest contribution of 58.55 percent in total agriculture value which contributes 11.61 percent to GDP. On the other hand crops, forestry and fishing contributions in agriculture value is 23.55 percent, 2.06 percent, 2.17 percent and contribution in GDP are 4.67 percent, 0.41 percent and 0.43 percent Respectively. In agriculture sector we mainly produce the primary product (like wheat, rice and etc.) which is provided to industrial sector for making industrial product. These primary or agriculture products are also export to world which are the 60% of our total export. Thus, agriculture sector play a vital in economy and also directly link this the economic development (Agriculture sector ministry of finance 2015-16).
In the Agriculture area, there are 8.260 million farmers in the nation. These farmers are working a territory of 52.910 million sections of land. In the aggregate region of homestead in the developed territory is 90.00% (42.620 million sections of land). Land utilize force in the nation is 83 percent on the normal. It is most astounding in the Punjab (90 percent) and least in Baluchistan (45 percent). The general editing force in the nation is 159 percent. It is the most elevated in the Punjab 167.0 percent and the least in Baluchistan 102.0 percent. The aggregate developed territory under wheat is 28.230 million sections of land, under rice 9.360 million sections of land, under cotton 9.230 million sections of land under sugarcane 2.630 million sections of land and under maize 2.39 million sections of land. Wheat alone involved 42.00% of the aggregate zone which is the most noteworthy territory of any yield in Pakistan (Agriculture Census of Pakistan 2010).
From the time of independence, country is trying to increase their agriculture output. Different type of Hybrid seeds, land reforms, chemical fertilizer, tunnel farming, chemical pesticides, machinery, chemical pesticides, canal irrigation development, establishment of different research centers, etc. by the governance of the country. The most productive and technology advanced period in Pakistan history was “Green revolution”. Many tube well and Hybrid seeds are provided to formers to increase the agriculture output. The area which was not producing yield and less fertile due to shortage of water was fulfilled though Green revolution and makes the yield productive.
The “Thar region of Pakistan” is also that area where dunes are present. This region is allocated in the Panjab province. Lyyah, Muzaffargarrh, Jhang, Bhakkar, Mianwali and Khushab districts are the compile if this region. The large portion of this region has sand dunes. Because this region is allocate in “arid zoon of the world”. The ground water is very deep and the land is less fertile. Large population of this region is depends on agriculture. And which is the main source of earning and livelihood there. Mostly agriculture yields like. Grams, wheat and bean seed are still produced in this region. The production output is very low because this region is dependent on “rainfall”, because rain water is only source of water irrigation in this region. Increase in demand of agricultural product due to population growth leads the formers to find that method of agriculture(Agroforestry) that increase its output and earning for improve their livelihood and standard of living following by them scare resources.
Now in current time period, one of the latest types of method and technology that should be adopt to increase the land or yield fertile and productive is “agroforestry”. Which can be define as “Agroforestry incorporates trees or bushes into cultivating systems in ways that make an agro-biological system progression like that happening in normal systems, enabling agriculturists to impersonate mimic natural ecosystem in their management of ?elds”. Agroforestry is very useful in those regions where the ground water is decreasing by time. And the land decreases its fertility. When the trees are grounded, this may help to rose up the water level of the ground and increase the humidity of land. Agroforestry practices provide food, sources of food and fodder; improve soil fertility and pollination (Sileshi 2007). Agroforestry systems have inherent for more profitability and productivity of formers. (F.K. Akinnifesi 2008, Dean Current 1995).
1.2 Problem Statement
The profitable use of dunes land in Thal is believed to increases income of the people, fulfill the household firewood necessities, expanding timber business in the area and increasing employment opportunities for unemployed small farmers. In addition, tree cultivation leads to increase the fertility of dunes land, reduce sand deposition and helps to keep environment clean. And by maximize the profit of farmers by adoption increase the utility of them.
However, given the above benefits, a large portion of farmers still continues cultivating traditional non-irrigated crops on dunes. It is therefore, important to clearly understand that why some farmers are adopting agro-forestry on dunes and others are not? In response to answer above question, the research has revealed that development and effective diffusion of new agricultural practices and technologies need to rest on a sound economic basis because it will largely shape how well farmers adopt innovative change (Mckenzie 2011) The research therefore needs to be done to evaluate whether innovative agro-forestry in Thal region leads to increase farm profitability and productivity? Using survey data, this study attempts such an accounting for farmers in district Bhakkar of Thal region. It compares outcomes for farming with innovative agro-forestry and conventional techniques and examines the overall economic viability and productivity. It also identifies other social and economic factors that determine farmer’s behavior regarding adoption of agro forestry on dunes.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The study intends to highlight the farmer’s behavior regarding adoption of agro forestry on dunes and to evaluate the performance of agro forestry and conventional crops on dunes in terms of profit and production. Therefore, the main objectives of the study are:
1- To explore the adoption of innovative (tree farming) agro production businesses on dunes and associated factors.
2- Economically quantify and compare the incomes and profitability margins of conventional Vs innovative (tree farming) in the study area
3- To observe productivity differences of both farming systems in the target site.
4- To give policy recommendations to the relevant stakeholders.
1.4 Research questions
Proposed research questions are
1- Why some farmers adopted agro forestry and others did not? Or what are the factors that influence the adoption of agro forestry?
2- Whether or not agro forestry or tree cultivation is profitable business compared to Conventional agriculture?
3- Whether the adoption agroforestry is economically maximize the utility of farmer or not?
Following are the purposed research assumptions
H1: Farmers with higher education are more likely adopting agro forestry
H2: Farmers with more farm size of dunes are more likely adopting agro forestry
H3: Farmers with higher non-farm income are more likely adopting agro forestry cultivation
H4: The adoption of agroforestry is economically maximize the utility
1.6 Benefits and Usefulness
This is an assessment study of the of innovative agro-forestry practices which is also a critical evaluation of the benefits, costs, and impacts on the overall development and natural resource management challenges in the area. As there is no such study has been
Undertaken in this particular region as well as on this specific topic which may make it highly significant for the various stakeholders like policy makers, research institutions and academia. Moreover, as per the results obtained 44 percent area is comprised of dunes having conventional or innovative agro forestry crops. Agriculture department / government has neither notice this innovation nor announced any policy regarding further development of this sector of the economy. Nevertheless, the outcomes of the study, optimistically, would bring this issue in the notice of the public sector institutions and this might be a good fruit for their thought for necessary action.
1.7 Organization of the Study
This study comprises of five chapters. Chapter one is the introduction of the study. Chapter two provides a literature review of the studies, conducted in finding the productivity and profitability of conventional and agro forestry farming and also the impact of the different factors on the productivity and adoption of agro forestry. Chapter three defines the methodology and provides approaches and techniques utilized in the study along with the description of the variables used in the research. Chapter four contains analysis results and detailed discussions. Chapter five provides the conclusion, implications and the limitations of the study.