Biodiv Sci ›› 2023, Vol. 31 ›› Issue (9): 23064.  DOI: 10.17520/biods.2023064

• Reviews • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Theoretical proof, realistic dilemma and realization mechanism of farmers’ rights and interests protection in utilization of Important Agricultural Heritage Systems

Zhiqian Wan1, Yuan Zhang2, Wenfei Zhang1,*()   

  1. 1. College of Humanities & Social Sciences, Agricultural and Rural Rule of Law Innovation Research Center, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070
    2. Wuhan Municipal Justice Bureau, Wuhan 430014


Aim: By 2022, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs (MARA) had announced 139 China National Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (China-NIAHS). As one of the subjects of protecting agro-cultural heritage, farmers should be recognized their contribution. Therefore, it is of great practical significance to explore the farmers’ rights and interests protection in utilization of Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (IAHS), and it can provide reference for protection of IAHS.

Findings The results indicated that, first, IAHS refer to the agricultural production systems, with rich biodiversity, agricultural technology, traditional knowledge, ecological and cultural landscape, which rooted long-standing cultural traditions in the heritage site and long-term practical experiences of farmers. Second, farmers are the creators, protectors and inheritors of IAHS. The utilization of IAHS cannot ignore the subject status of farmers and protection of their rights and interests. Third, according to the existing legal system, farmers’ rights and interests involved in utilization of IAHS mainly include right to participate, benefit-sharing and ecological compensation. At present, there are varying degrees of realistic dilemma about realization of these three rights and interests.

Suggestions Based on our results, in order to protect farmers’ rights and interests in utilization of IAHS, and realize high-quality sustainable development of IAHS, we propose the following suggestions: (1) realization of farmers’ right to participate, which through arousing farmers’ willingness to participate, perfecting farmers’ participation mechanism and strengthening farmers’ participation guarantee; (2) realization of benefit-sharing for farmers, which through clarifying benefit-sharing content, establishing benefit-sharing mechanism and improving relevant supporting system; (3) realization of ecological compensation to farmers, which through defining subjects of ecological compensation, determining standards of ecological compensation, and establishing diversified funding sources and compensation methods of ecological compensation.

Key words: Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (IAHS), farmers’ rights and interests, right to participate, benefit-sharing, ecological compensation