- Improving the efficiency of rain-fed production
- Modernisation of irrigation technologies
Optimizing the yields from existing crop production would enable farmers to grow more food with similar water volumes. To achieve that there is a need for effective spreading of agronomic knowledge and allowing farmer access to inputs including good quality seed and crop protection to reduce pre- and post-harvest losses to pests and diseas. Every crop that is lost is inefficient water management. These days it takes around 1,5 cubic meters of water to yield 1kg of crop and from that 15-35% of fresh water is unsustainable. Predictions saying that water consumption demands rise an additional 18% by the year 2050 in developed world and even 40% in developing world so it’s even more important to use it right in agriculture.Flint River Partnership Initiative One great example of dissemination of agronomic knowledge can be seen in Georgia, USA. To improve the efficiency of agricultural water use and to move innovative irrigation and conservation practices from the research laboratory to the field, a coalition of farmers, researchers, conservationists and private companies joined together in the Flint River Partnership Initiative. The partnership began by extending newly adapted irrigation methods and technologies to fields, such as variable rate irrigation systems that can adjust the amount of water applied to different places depending on soil needs and weather conditions. This system saves an average of 15 percent water use each year and can be adapted to most center-pivot irrigation systems worldwide. As it is shown on this example, it is possible to adjust the water use in agriculture. More crop per drop is essential in increasing productivity and decreasing exploitation and water use. Learning how to get more food with less water will ensure us to grow food we need but without damage on availability of fresh water.