Complex interactions between organisms regulate their numbers in natural ecosystems. Competition, mutualisms, and other types of interactions are promoted by the organization and structure of the system. Growing one or very few crops in modern agriculture eliminates many of these interactions, often removing natural control mechanisms and allowing pest outbreaks. An agroecological alternative seeks to reintroduce more complex structures and species arrangements, often including both crop and noncrop species, in order to reduce the use of pesticides and enhance natural controls.
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