ABSTRACT

Maize is produced under a broad range of ecological and technological conditions around the world. At one end of the technology spectrum are the resource-poor, small-scale farmers of the low-income developing countries who use few external resources (inputs, hired labor, machinery). In these systems the productivity of the individual farmer is low and production of maize hardly exceeds the family’s consumption. At the other end of the spectrum are the large-scale farmers, mainly in the industrialized countries, who use capital-intensive, science-based production technologies that are considerably dependent upon the use of external resources, especially machinery and agricultural inputs. In these systems, the productivity of the individual farmer is high and large maize surpluses are produced.