Nahieli Silva - Cassani, Karen Fabiola Mancera, Jorge Canul, Luis Ramirez Aviles, Javier Solorio, Patricia Güereca, Francisco Galindo


Background. It is agreed that there is a need to work on sustainable extensive livestock production systems. Silvopastoral systems are an alternative for efficient and sustainable grazing systems to increase the provision of ecosystems services and minimize the environmental costs associated to monoculture systems (MS), but the efficiency of intensively managed (IS) and unmanaged or native (NS) silvopastoral systems has never been assessed and compared to MS. The Framework for Assessing the Sustainability of Natural Resource Management (MESMIS) offers a tool to assess sustainability criteria in agroecosystems. Objective. To use MESMIS to compare the sustainable performance of NS, IS and MS and determine the system with the best sustainable performance in the Mexican Tropics. Methodology. One MS IS and NS per municipality (Tizimin, Merida and Tzucacab) were evaluated in the state of Yucatán, Mexico. Based on the MESMIS approach, the evaluation of the critical points of sustainability resulted in the selection of 19 indicators classified according to the attributes also defined by MESMIS (production, adaptability, stability-resilience, equity and self-management) and by sustainability dimensions (environmental, animal welfare, economic and social). After evaluation, indicator scores were obtained and integrated into attributes and dimensions through the assignation of equitable, balanced weights (W). Finally, attribute and dimension scores were aggregated in amoeba graphs to facilitate visual interpretation. Results. NS were better for the dimensions ‘Environmental’ and ‘Economic’ and the attributes ‘Stability, ‘Reliability’and ‘Resilience,’ and ‘Production’. IS were best for the dimension ‘Animal Welfare’ and attributes ‘Adaptability’ and ‘Self-reliance’. MS were better for the ‘Social’ dimension and the ‘Equity’ attribute. Implications. The fact that IS appeared to be more sustainable than MS does not leave out the idea of considering NS as a better option for some criteria such as the biodiversity conservation and the prevention of disease outbreaks, than IS. We suggest that more studies are carried on areas of potential improvement for IS as well as NS. Conclusions. This information will be useful to continue working on the parametrization of sustainability criteria of cattle extensive systems to be used for more efficient policies.


sustainability; cattle; MESMIS; silvopastoral systems; animal welfare.

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URN: http://www.revista.ccba.uady.mx/urn:ISSN:1870-0462-tsaes.v25i3.35566

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.56369/tsaes.3556

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