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Proceedings of the 4th ISOFAR Scientific Conference
2014, Pages: 319–322

Can water quality problems motivate conventional farmers to convert to organic farming?




Recently, the conservation of water resources has become a major issue in many countries because of the increasing problems of water pollutions by agriculture. In this context, organic farming (OF) is seen as a promising solution to this problem because of its regulation that prohibits the use of che mical fertilisers and pesticides. Our hypothesis is that water quality problems can be a motivation for conventional farmers to convert to OF. This research is based on 65 farmers’ interviews (mainly conventional farmers). A qualitative analysis of the int erviews was carried out. Six different farmer profiles have been identified depending on farmer’s perception of the water question and on their declared willingness to convert to OF. Our results show that the existence of a local problem of water quality c an lead farmers to convert to OF. Actions set to develop OF to respond the water quality problem can reach farmers who were not part of the classical pool of “potential converters”.

Keywords: water quality, environment, conversion, organic farmer, motivation.

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