Title: Economic and ecological comparison of organic and non-organic farming: a case of green economy in Nepal

Authors: Pabitra Aryal; Dinesh Raj Bhuju; Resham Bahadur Thapa-Parajuli; Scott J. Meiners

Addresses: Department of Biological Sciences, Eastern Illinois University, 600 Lincoln Avenue, Charleston, IL 61920-3099, USA ' Central Department of Environmental Science, Tribhuvan University, Kirtipur, Nepal ' Hull University Business School, University of Hull, Hull, North Humberside HU6 7RX, UK ' Department of Biological Sciences, Eastern Illinois University, 600 Lincoln Avenue, Charleston, IL 61920-3099, USA

Abstract: Farmers in Kathmandu Valley and its periphery traditionally practised organic farming but switched to non-organic after the advent of chemical fertilisers in search of better production. This study was an attempt to assess economic and environmental differences between organic and non-organic farming practices using a case study from Bhaktapur, a city near Kathmandu, Nepal. Methodology included economic comparisons, assessment of soil chemical parameters and weed biodiversity. It also explored market demand for organic product and consumer's willingness to pay. The survey showed that the average financial benefit from organic vegetable products was less than from non-organic farming while organic farming was more beneficial in environmental value. Furthermore, market demand for organic products was moderate while that of non-organic products was higher (seller's perception). Consumer is willing to pay a premium for organic products. Finally, the study found the environmental and social pillars were comparatively stronger than the economic in GE perspective.

Keywords: green economy; market demand; non-organic farming; organic farming; weed biodiversity; willingness to pay; Nepal; case study; economic differences; environmental differences; soil chemistry; organic products; organic market; organic vegetables; price premium.

DOI: 10.1504/IJGE.2015.075194

International Journal of Green Economics, 2015 Vol.9 No.3/4, pp.226 - 241

Available online: 07 Mar 2016 *

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