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Decision support model to select crop pattern for sustainable agricultural practices using fuzzy MCDM

Qureshi, Mohamed RafikN., Singh, RamKaran, Hasan, Mohd.Abul
Environment, development and sustainability 2018 v.20 no.2 pp. 641-659
climatic factors, cost effectiveness, cropping systems, crops, decision support systems, farmers, farming systems, gross domestic product, issues and policy, multi-criteria decision making, soil, stakeholders, sustainable agriculture
The crop pattern has a significant impact on the feasibility of sustainable agricultural practices. Selected crop pattern influences environmental and economic condition and affects sustainability profoundly in agricultural practices. Hence, a careful intervention is required in the selection of an optimal crop pattern for sustainable agricultural practices. Selection of a particular set of crop pattern depends on many criteria that may vary from place to place thus pose challenges in deciding an optimum crop pattern. The present research focuses on the crop selection pattern in Indian environment that considers comprehensive criteria related to sustainable farming practices. Based on the in-depth review of the literature and experts opinion, comprehensive criteria related to sustainable farming practices for Ravi season crop are identified. Total twelve criteria covering socioeconomic conditions, soil and water conditions, environmental and climatic conditions are earmarked and taken into account for eight most commonly grown crops in Ravi season and later on modeled to determine the crop pattern for most needed sustainability. A fuzzy-based multi-criteria decision-making model has been developed considering the Indian farming system. The scarce resources availability to Indian farmers poses many challenges to practice farming with most needed sustainability. The present research will be useful in the area of Indian farming practices in particular and global farming practices in general. It will also help stakeholders in their cost effective decision making for better crop productivity leading to sustainable farming practices. Additionally, the state policy makers will be able to formulate effective state driven sustainable farming policy to enhance its stake in gross domestic product to become self-reliance.