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Crop asynchrony stabilizes food production

Matters Arising to this article was published on 09 December 2020

The Original Article was published on 19 June 2019

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Fig. 1: Crop asynchrony as a function of crop diversity and determinants of national caloric production stability.
Fig. 2: National crop asynchrony and caloric production stability worldwide.

Data availability

All datasets used and generated during this study are provided in a public repository:

Code availability

The codes used for data preparation and analyses are provided in a public repository:


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L.E. acknowledges funding from the Helmholtz Association (Research School ESCALATE, VH-KO-613). We thank V. Grimm for discussions; M. Wu for statistical support and D. Renard for discussions and the exchange of code to make our analysis clearer and more consistent. The FAOSTAT database is maintained and regularly updated by FAO with regular support from its Member States.

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Authors and Affiliations



L.E., M.S., T.T. and R.S. designed the study. L.E. and C.S. performed the analysis. All authors wrote the manuscript.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Lukas Egli.

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The authors declare no competing interests.

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Extended data figures and tables

Extended Data Fig. 1 Main determinants of national caloric production stability.

ah, Effects of crop diversity (a), crop asynchrony (b), irrigation (c), nitrogen use intensity (d), temperature instability (e), precipitation instability (f), warfare (g) and time (h) on caloric production stability. Results are shown for the linear regression models including crop diversity (green), crop asynchrony (blue) and both (orange) (n = 590). Irrigation and nitrogen use intensity were back-transformed from square-root-transformation, predicted values were back-transformed from log-transformation. Predictions were calculated using the observed range of the focal predictor, while keeping all the other predictors at their mean values. Shaded areas represent 95% confidence intervals. The figure was created with the statistical software package R 3.6.110.

Extended Data Table 1 Data sources underlying the analyses
Extended Data Table 2 Determinants of national caloric production stability

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Egli, L., Schröter, M., Scherber, C. et al. Crop asynchrony stabilizes food production. Nature 588, E7–E12 (2020).

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