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24, chemin de Borde Rouge -Auzeville - CS52627 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France

Last update: May 2021

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Martin LECHENET (21/03/2017)

Peut-on concilier un faible usage de pesticides, une bonne performance économique et environnementale ?
Analyse d’un réseau national de fermes de démonstration Ecophyto

Le 21 Mars 2017 à 14h00, salle de Conférence, INRA Dijon


Directeur de recherche, INRA Dijon

Directeur de thèse


Directeur de Recherche, INRA Grignon

Directeur de thèse

Mr. Guillaume PY

Consultant Sénior, Agrosolutions

Co-encadrant de thèse

Feeding an increasing world population with a sustainable agriculture is one of the greatest challenges of this century. The reduction of the reliance on pesticides is a critical aspect in this quest for sustainability. Whether cropping systems with reduced reliance on pesticides would be able to reconcile the various components of sustainability remains however a matter of debate. Are they as productive and profitable than current mainstream cropping systems? Here the objective is to study the feasibility of a reduced reliance on pesticides in France. We used a unique dataset from a national network of more than thousand arable commercial farms between 2009 and 2011. Launched in the framework of the Ecophyto political plan, the DEPHY-Ferme network includes commercial farms that are committed in pesticide reduction. They show contrasting pest management strategies across a wide range of French production situations. Based on this diversity, our results identify farming strategies with low pesticide use. These strategies rely on combinations of management techniques that vary from a context to another. We show that cropping systems with reduced reliance on pesticides are not less productive and less profitable than other systems in more than 75% of French situations. We assess their performances through seven indicators covering the various aspects of sustainability and we show that a low reliance on pesticides may be related to increased agricultural sustainability. At the national scale, a widespread transition of French agriculture toward a reduced reliance on pesticides would be beneficial both for the trade balance and the protein and energy self-sufficiency of France. Such a transition would imply deep changes for famers and for the whole farming sector, changes that must be better grasped in order to achieve the ambitious objectives of the Ecophyto plan for 2025.

Keywords: Pesticides, Farm network, Cropping system, Production situation, Multicriteria assessment, Sustainability