• Marija Gjosheva Kovachevikj
  • Verica Ilieva
  • Sasho Arsov


Favourable climate conditions and the long tradition of rice cultivation as a main source of livelihood is essential ground for a large portion of the population in the Kochani valley to cultivate rice. The low productivity levels and high production costs put major limitations on the competitiveness on markets, mainly due to inadequate and obsolete cultivation practices applied. In addition, the common cultivation methods contribute to the destruction of environment and agroecosystems by intensive use of natural resources and agrochemicals. To that end, the NCP project implemented activities for adaptation of sustainable rice practices at 30 farmers, members in the association „Rice Tiller“, Cheshinovo, for the period of three years (2017-2019). Primarily, sustainable rice practices used by farmers consisted of: laser land levelling, use of certified seed material and reduced seed quantity, controlled use of fertilizers and agrochemicals and controlled use of water. Two sowing variants are implemented and tested, one by using seeding machine on dry soil and the another with manual seed broadcasting onto the watered soil. In this paper, data gained from the farmers’ passports, where regularly all agrotechnical measures and costs were recorded, are processed with the use of descriptive statistics and empirical methods of analysis. The outcomes demonstrate that the introduction of sustainable rice production results in efficient use of natural resources and reduced production costs, especially with dry-seeding method, which is fundamental for mitigation of food unsafety, biodiversity loss, soil degradation and environmental pollution, and at the same time for increasing rural households’ revenues.


Andreevska, D., Menkovska, M., & Andov, D. (2012). Overview of the current condition, in production consumption and the research potential of the rice crop in the Republic of Macedonia. Macedonian Journal of Animal Science, 3(2), 219–228.
Andreevska, D., Andov, D., Simeonovska, E., Dimitrovski, T., & Ibrahim, J. (2018). Macedonian rice production nowadays – from traditional towards modern approach. International Ҫanakkale rice workshop, 26-27 July 2018, Ҫanakkale, Turkey.
Angelova, K., Ilieva, V., Ruzdik, M.N., Karov, I., Mihajlov, Lj., & Ilievski, M. (2018). Examination on yield and some yield associated parameters in different rice genotypes. Journal of Agriculture and Plant Sciences, 16(1), 21-25.
Cassman, K.G., Peng, S., Olk, D. C., Ladha, J.K., Reichardt, W., Dobermann, A., & Singh, U. (1998). Opportunities for increased nitrogen-use efficiency for improved resource management in irrigated rice systems. Field Crops Research, 56(1-2), 7–39.
Cucu, M.A., Said-Pullicino, D., Maurino, V., Bonifacio, E., Romani, M., & Celi, L. (2014). Influence of redox conditions and rice straw incorporation on nitrogen availability in fertilized paddy soils. Biology and Fertility of Soils, 50, 755–764.
De Miranda, M.S., Fonseca, M.L., Lima, A., de Moraes, T.F., & Rodrigues, F.A. (2015). Environmental Impacts of Rice Cultivation. American Journal of Plant Sciences, 06(12), 2009–2018.
Donald, P.F. (2004). Biodiversity Impacts of Some Agricultural Commodity Production Systems. Conservation Biology, 18(1), 17-38.
Ferrero, A., & Tinarelli, A. (2007). Rice Cultivation in the E.U. Ecological Conditions and Agronomical Practices. In book: Pesticide Risk Assessment in Rice Paddies, 1-24.
Ilieva, V., Ruzdik, M.N., Karov, I., Mihajlov, Lj., Ilievski, M., & Kovacevik, B. (2017). Genetic variability for yield and some yield-related traits in rice (Oryza sativa L.) Journal of Agriculture and Plant Sciences, 15(1/2),75-80.
Ilievski, M., Spasova, D., Mihajlov, Lj., Spasov, D., Ruzdic, M.N., Ilieva, V., & Sofijanova, E. (2015). Production and balance among of cereal plants in Republic of Macedonia. Yearbook - Faculty of Agriculture, 13(1), 129-138.
Katayma, N., Baba, Y.G., Kusumoto, Y., & Tanaka, K. (2015). A review of post-war changes in rice farming and biodiversity in Japan. Agricultural systems, 132, 73-84.
Katoh, M., Murase, J., Hayashi, M., Matsuya, K., & Kimura, M. (2004). Nutrient leaching from the plow layer by water percolation and accumulation in the subsoil in an irrigated paddy field. Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, 50(5), 721–729.
Konj, T.D., Mabe, F.N., & Alhassan, H. (2019). Technical and resource-use-efficiency among smallholder rice farmers in Northern Ghana. Cogent Food & Agriculture, 5(1), 1651473.
Liu, S.Y., Zhang, Y.J., Lin, F., Zhang, L. & Zou, J.W. (2013). Methane and Nitrous Oxide Emissions from Direct- Seeded and Seedling-Transplanted Rice Paddies in Southeast China. Plant and Soil, 374, 285-297.
Mabe, F.N., Donkoh, S.A., & Al-hassan, S. (2018). Accounting for rice productivity heterogeneity in Ghana: The two-step stochastic metafrontier approach. International Journal of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, 12(8), 223-232.
Mihov, M., Georgieva, K., & Ivanova, N. (2017). Current problems of agricultural production mechanization. Mechanization in agriculture & Conserving of the resources, 63(3), 111-114.
Miniotti, E.F., Romani, M., Said-Pullicino, D., Facchi, A., Bertora, C., Peyron, M., Sacco, D., Bischetti, G.B., Lerda, C., Tenni, D., Gandolfi, C., & Celi, L. (2016). Agro-environmental sustainability of different water management practices in temperate rice agro-ecosystems. Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment, 222, 235–248.
Младеновски, Т., Андов, Д., и Станоев, В. (2012). Производство на сертифициран семенски материјал кај житните растенија. Земјоделски Институт, Скопје, стр.11-15.
Mottaleb, K.A., & Mohanty, S. (2014). Farm size and profitability of rice farming under rising input costs. Journal of Land Use Science, 10(3), 243-255.
Nature Conservation Programme in North Macedonia - NCP (2014). Strategy for development of tourism in the East Planning Region with Action Plan 2016-2025. Nature Conservation Programme in North Macedonia (NCP) is a project of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), coordinated by Farmahem, Skopje.
Nie, L., Peng, S., Bouman, B.A.M., Huang, J., Cui, K., Visperas, R.M., & Xiang, J. (2009). Alleviating soil sickness caused by aerobic monocropping: responses of aerobic rice to various nitrogen sources. Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, 55(1),150-159.
Onubuogu, G.C., Esiobu, N.S., Nwosu, C.S., & Okereke, C.N. (2014). Resource use efficiency of smallholder cassava farmers in Owerri Agricultural zone, Imo State, Nigeria. Scholarly Journal of Agricultural Science, 4(6), 306-318.
Ponnamperuma F.N. (1965). Dynamic aspects of flooded soils and the nutrition of the rice plant. The mineral nutrition of the rice plant. Proceedings of a Symposium at The International Rice Research Institute. The Johns Hopkins Press, Baltimore, Maryland, 295-328.
Ристески, С. (1999). Статистика за бизнис и економија. Економски факултет, Скопје.
Sacco, D., Cremon, C., Zavattaro, L., & Grignani, C. (2012). Seasonal variation of soil physical properties under different water managements in irrigated rice. Soil and Tillage Research, 118, 22–31.
Said-Pullicino, D., Cucu, M.A., Sodano, M., Birk, J.J., Glaser, B., & Celi, L. (2014). Nitrogen immobilization in paddy soils as affected by redox conditions and rice straw incorporation. Geoderma, 228–229, 44–53.
Smith, P., Martino, D., Cai, Z.C., Gwary, D., Janzen, H., Kumar, P., McCarl, B., Ogle, S., O’Mara, F., Rice, C., Scholes, B., Sirotenko, O., Howden, M., McAllister, T., Pan, G.X., Romanenkov, V., Scheider, U., Towprayoon, S., Wattenbach, M. & Smith, J. (2008). Greenhouse Gas Mitigation in Agriculture. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 363(1492), 789-813.
Statistical Office of the Republic of North Macedonia - SSO (2020, October 10). Statistical Yearbook of the Republic of North Macedonia, 2020. Retrieved from
Statistical Office of the Republic of North Macedonia - SSO (2017, December 28). Structure and typology of agricultural holdings, 2016. Retrieved from
Statistical Office of the Republic of North Macedonia - SSO (2008, March 1). Census of agriculture, 2007. Skopje, Retrieved from
Tyagi, L., Kumari, B., & Singh, S.N. (2010). Water management — A tool for methane mitigation from irrigated paddy fields. Science of The Total Environment, 408(5), 1085–1090.
Zhao, Y., De Maio, M., Vidotto, F., & Sacco, D. (2015). Influence of wet-dry cycles on the temporal infiltration dynamic in temperate rice paddies. Soil andTillage Research, 154, 14–21.
Zhou, T., Koomen, E., & Ke, X. (2020). Determinants of Farmland Abandonment on the Urban–Rural Fringe. Environmental Management, 65, 369–384.

Most read articles by the same author(s)