Agroforestry, nutrition and health (2006)

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Agroforestry is an ancient land use practice and modern science involving the deliberate management of trees on farms and in surrounding landscapes. Agroforestry systems vary greatly in tree species mix, complexity, configuration, and input requirements, producing a wide range of products and services. With appropriate technical and institutional support, the practice of agroforestry can contribute to rural food and health systems and help buffer households against health and nutrition shocks. As a science, agroforestry integrates perspectives from agriculture, ecology and rural development. For the practice of agroforestry to yield its full potential, it needs to bring health and nutrition to the fore. The figure presents a simple conceptual framework of agroforestry, health and nutrition linkages that focuses on five pathways between agroforestry and health, dubbed the MINER pathways: M—medicinal plant conservation, domestication, and propagation; I—income earned and inputs saved through improvements in the farm resource base and products for sale; N—nutritious agroforestry foods, including fruits and leaves; E—changes in ecosystem structure and function that affect disease risk and transmission; and R—responses of agroforestry priorities and programme design to changes in farmers’ circumstances resulting from health and nutrition problems. The rest of this brief briefly discusses the five MINER pathways.
Language: English
Imprint: International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), 2020 Focus No 13, May 2006, Brief 11 of 16: Understanding the Links between Agriculture and Health. 2006
Series: Policy brief,