Genetic research in some fundamental crops, together with the use of chemicals as pesticides and fertilizers, opened the way in the 1950s and 1960s to great changes in methodology in agriculture - with astonishing results in the tropics. This change became known as the Green Revolution - a truly great revolution in methods and materials which, when applied with intelligence, made possible in a few years the achievement of complete sufficiency in cereals production in South and South East Asia, Mexico and South America. After 20 years of continuous success, aspects of the Green Revolution need to be rediscussed in the light of new findings and possibilities offered by scientific and technological progress - and negative side effects on environment and health. These papers examine the present state of agriculture, and indicate the way forward for its development, especially in the tropics and, in particular, Africa and South America. The need for more research is stressed; priorities in the application of this research are discussed, such as the economic aspects of any new system to be adopted, and the need to respect the ecological equilibria of different environments and the balance of energy input/output in a given agrosystem.

Table of Contents

Introduction. Introductory remarks (U. Colombo). Scientific research and the challenge of agriculture in the tropics (G.B. Marini-Bettòlo). Tropical ecosystems (E.H. Hartmans). I. Agrochemicals: Production, Distribution and Regulation. The role of industry in the research of agrochemicals (P. Piccardi). Production and trade of pesticides (P. Dubach). Environmentally dangerous products (R. Olembo). Regulations: procedures for authorization and use of agrochemicals in Malaysia and some selected developing countries of Asia (A. Jamil). New lines of research in agrochemicals: the role of industry, national institutions and international agencies (J.R. Plimmer). II. Adverse Effects of Fertilizers and Pesticides. Diffusion of agrochemicals in the tropical environment and in the food chain monitoring and modelling in biotic and abiotic systems (S.E. Jørgensen). Effects of agrochemicals on tropical ecosystems: Soil, water, flora and fauna (F. Korte, I. Scheunert). Effects of pesticides and of nitrate and N-nitrosocompounds on human and animal health in the tropics: Epidemiological and toxicological aspects (J. Moutschen-Dahmen). III. Economic Aspects of the Use of Agrochemicals in Developing Countries. Pesticides: Energy use in chemical agriculture (D. Pimentel). Socio-economic aspects of technological innovation in food production systems (P. Bifani). Comparative analysis, cost-benefit efficiency ratio in the use of agrochemicals in developing countries (S. Ghatak). Increase of productivity of crops: Control of pre- and post-harvest losses (W. Reed). The role of fertilizers in increasing food productivity in developing countries (D.H. Parish). IV. Optimization of the Use of Agrochemicals in Tropical Countries. Pesticides and the protection of the environment and health in the tropics (G.B. Marini-Bettòlo). New bioactive products: Growth regulators, antifeedants, pheromones and other at


© 1988
Elsevier Science
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