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									             Agriculture




Most important question of the day: What’s for lunch?
          Agriculture: deliberate land modification through plant
             cultivation and raising animals for food or profit.




• Percentage of labor force MDC:
  5% (avg.), LDC: 55%
Source URL: http://www.faculty.de.gcsu.edu/~dvess/gissues/agrlabor.jpg
                              Subsistence Agriculture:




             food production primary for farm family consumption
                          Example: slash and burn
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/6b/Bakweri_cocoyam_farmer_from_Cameroon.jpg
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subsistence_farming
                                    Commercial Agriculture:




• food production primarily for sale off the farm
• Can Start as subsistence farming, excess sold
• Can transition to pure commercial agriculture

•   http://www.internationalspecialreports.com/theamericas/00/bahamas/17-2.gif
    http://www.georgetowncranberry.com/images/skipper.jpg
                         Agribusiness




    integration of commercial agriculture into food processing,
                      usually by corporations
Image: http://www.agribusiness-
  mgmt.wsu.edu/Templates/index_images/Landscape-Green_r2_c24_.jpg
Source: http://www.agribusiness-mgmt.wsu.edu/
                                    Wet Rice Agriculture
                                                                   Subsistence     Cash Crop
                                                                 Flooding, pests, (Same)
                                                                 drought, wind,
                                                                 disease,
                                                                 population
                                                                 Lower yield     Higher yield
                                                                 No / low debt   Need inputs
                                                                                 Higher debt
                                                                 Low profit      Profits 
                                                                                 machinery,
                                                                                 inputs, savings
                                                                                 for lean years
• Generally expands to hillsides as population increases
• In earthquake zones, mudslide risks increase… Also, storms.
•   Image: http://geographyfieldwork.com/riceterrace_small.jpg
•   Information: http://geographyfieldwork.com/RiceFarm.htm
Swidden Agriculture / slash and burn / shifting cultivation
1.         Slash vegetation.
2.         Burn the slashed veg.
3.         Plant in nutrient ashes.
4.         Yields drop off.
5.         Change sites. Repeat.

          Requires much land
           recovering from past
           slash and burn
           activities.


http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~anthro/images/rainforest/26.JPG
Slash: http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~anthro/images/rainforest/22.JPG
Burn:
http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~anthro/images/rainforest/26.JPG&imgrefurl=http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~anthro/images/ra
inforest/&h=512&w=768&sz=140&tbnid=TO1EkMcffXOxEM:&tbnh=94&tbnw=141&hl=en&start=5&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dshifting%2Bcultivation%26svnum%3
D10%26hl%3Den%26lr%3D%26safe%3Doff%26client%3Dfirefox-a%26rls%3Dorg.mozilla:en-US:official_s%26sa%3DG
Growth: http://www.taa.org.uk/Courses/Week4/Swidden2.jpg
Tree: http://www.sln.org.uk/geography/images/SLN@Malaysia2005/Richard%20and%20Bob/Shifting%20cultivation%20266.jpg
Story: http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~anthro/images/rainforest/
           Shifting cultivation (observations)
•   SOUND: Done wisely, it is
    ecologically sound in
    otherwise uncultivable soils.
•   POPULATION: Increasing
    population density eventually
    makes this practice
    unsustainable.
•   TITLE: In some countries,
    land tenure (ownership) is
    established by cutting the
    land, not leaving it “idle”
    (letting it recover).
•   COMPETITION: In some
    places, shifting cultivation is
    being replaced by a pattern
    of logging, cattle ranching,
    and more intensive cash crop
    cultivation.
•   LOSS: This can be a first
    step in forest conversion to
    grassland.

                                      http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~anthro/images/rainforest/26.JPG
                                      http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~anthro/images/rainforest/27.JPG
            Issues for subsistence agriculture:
•   Population growth
    – Forest fallow  bush fallow  short fallow  annual  multi-cropping
        • Intensification may not be sustainable. (Site dependent)
    – New farming methods require cash.
        • more inputs: fertilizer, manure, new tools, more labor intensive
        • new seeds and new crops
        • Needs to have enough income to fertilize, buy equipment, buy seed.
•   International trade pressure:
    – conversion of food crops to cash crops for more profit…
    – drug crops (can be involuntary)
       Intensive subsistence agriculture:

Examples: wet rice cultivation, dry farming
•   maximize yield per acre, minimize unused land, some
    double cropping
•   low machinery inputs, high animal and human inputs
•   dry farming  crop rotation
           Pastoral nomadism works on marginal lands…




                                    If you avoid overgrazing!
Story: http://www.geographie.uni-freiburg.de/ipg/forschung/ap1/current_projects/chad/nomads_project%20area.html
Image: http://www.geographie.uni-
    freiburg.de/ipg/forschung/ap1/current_projects/chad/harmattan%20vaches%20en%20transhumance%20big.jpg
                        MDC farming:
–     Mixed crop and livestock farming: crops  animals  humans (e.g.
      beef, milk, eggs)
    •    crop rotation, nitrogen fixing crop intermixed with primary crop(s)
–     Dairy farming: within range of market (avoid spoiling), refrigeration
      extends this range
–     Grain farming: e.g. wheat belt
–     Livestock ranching: often on marginal lands in the West, also
      Amazonia, Pampas, Outback
–     Mediterranean agriculture: Horticulture: growing of fruits and
      vegetables, and flowers
–     Commercial gardening and fruit gardening: horticulture, large
      scale, migrant workers
–     Plantation farming: specialize in 1-2 crops, once slavery, now import
      workers
How Do you figure out what to grow where?

               Von Thunen Model: Important
                       Influences:
 • Market Price
 • Distance
 • Transportation Cost
    – Perishability, (actually covered under transportation cost)


 • Likely on the quiz, test, and final exam.
                         Von Thunen Model




• Distance is a function of land rent and transportation costs.
• Basically, what produces the most profit at each location?
•   http://people.hofstra.edu/geotrans/eng/ch6en/conc6en/img/vonthunen.gif
•   Info: http://people.hofstra.edu/geotrans/eng/ch6en/conc6en/vonthunen.html
               Issues for commercial farmers:
•       Access to market: Von Thunen model (ring and transport)
    –     Land rent and distance driven… too far  no profit, lose $
•       Overproduction
    –     encourage growth of crops with global demand
    –     price subsidies
    –     buy surplus yield, often donate to foreign governments
•       Unsustainable agriculture
    –      move to more sustainable practices
         •   sensitive land management
         •   Ridge contour tillage
         •   limited use of chemicals
         •   (organic farming)
            Issues for subsistence farmers:

•    Population growth
    – Forest fallow  bush fallow  short fallow  annual
        cropping  multi-cropping
       • Conversion from slash and burn to multi-crop farming
           may not be sustainable
•    Profit motives impact farmers.
    – Lure of money
    – Land loss (legal, and illegal) to for-profit activity
        International trade pressure:

•    conversion of food crops to cash crops
    – may make the economy dependent on foreign
        foods
    – if so, cash crop shortfalls or price drops 
        avoidable food shortages
•    drug crops
    – forced or voluntary growth of drug crops
        Strategies for increasing food supply:
   Increase agricultural land
   – marginal lands
      • require careful management for long-term yields
      • must worry about soil salinization, selenium, etc.
      • desertification: human action causes land deterioration
        to a desert-like state.
• Increase land productivity
   – green revolution
      • often requires nutrient inputs (external, cost)
      • often relies on machines (external, cost, needs gas)
      • seed stocks are foreign owned, possibly not self
        propagating
    Strategies for increasing food supply: (part 2)
    Identify new sources:
    – Cultivate the oceans
        • We are already over-fishing now.
            – (Stock recovery, or risk extinction.)
    – Develop higher protein cereals (decrease meat demand)
    – Promote the consumption of under-used foods, e.g.
         soybeans (soy burgers, etc.)
•     increase trade
    – Reduces local famines
    – Works until you run out globally.
        • Who starves first?
               Food supply crises
Example: Africa
•   Population increases faster than local food supply.
•   Over-planting removes soil nutrients.
•   Trees harvested for firewood.
•   Overgrazing removes grasses and herbs.
•   Desertification is a major problem.
   – The desert has been marching south towards the sea.
•   Warfare, ethnic cleansing, cash crops, and global warming
    exacerbate the problem.
             Questions?
• Review notes.

								
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