ISSN: 0041-3216 (Online), 0041-3216 (Print)
Volume 66 Number 4
Concept of monetary equivalent ratio and its usefulness in the evaluation of intercropping advantages
The monetary equivalent ratio (MER) measures the economic advantage of intercropping over the sole crop that has the largest economic return. When the yield advantage of an association of cassava-cowpea-maize was assessed, the economic advantage of intercropping was only 6-14% (MER= 1.06-1.14) even though the agronomic advantage ranged 12-63% when assessed with the land equivalent ratio (LER = 1.12-1.63). In a cassava-okra-maize-cowpea association, the agronomic advantage ranged 2-25% (LER = 1.02-1.25). The MER indicated no economic advantage and the efficiency of the system was only 50-62% of the most economic sole crop, which was cassava. The implications of these findings on the design of intercropping experiments are discussed.
Keywords: Land equivalent ratio; Monetary equivalent ratio; Multi-storey intercropping; Competition indices; Row intercropping; Strip intercropping; Substitutive model