New Knowledge on Conservation Tillage Systems for California Tomatoes Indicates Cost Savings and Resource Conservation Benefits

The tomato production industry in California is looking for new ways to cut rising fuel and labor costs. University of California researchers have been comparing standard till (ST) and conservation tillage (CT) systems in terms of economics, profitability, soil properties, and dust emissions through a tomato-cotton rotation. The study found that the CT system reduced the total number of passes over the field by an average of nine per year and showed an increase in profitability. In addition, the value of the savings from reducing labor and fuel prices will increase and greenhouse gas emissions will lower.

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