A system of growing crops and raising animals which
involves soil conservation and sustainable irrigation.
In simple terms, also known as farming.
Other types of ‘cultures’-silviculture; pisciculture;
Any farm can be viewed as a system, with inputs,
throughputs (or processes), outputs and feedback.
Inputs can be divided into two groups.
Physical inputs are naturally occurring things
such as water, raw materials and the land.
Human or Cultural Inputs are things like
money, labour, and skills.
Processes And Outputs
Processes or Throughputs are the actions
within the farm that allow the inputs to turn into
outputs. Processes could include things such as
milking, harvesting and shearing.
Outputs can be negative or positive, although they
are usually the latter. Negative outputs include
waste products and soil erosion. The positive
outputs are the finished products, such as meat,
milk and eggs, and the money gained from the sale
of those products.
Feedback is what is put back into the system.
The main two examples of this are money, from the
sale of the outputs, and knowledge, gained from the
whole manufacturing process.
This knowledge could then be used to make the
product better or improve the efficiency of the
Types of Farming
Arable- growing crops
Pastoral- rearing animals
These three types can be-
Subsistence (Intensive/extensive)- slash and burn also known
Done either on Small scale or large scale
Maximizing the carrying capacity of land (yield) with
the use of correct irrigation techniques to ensure soil
Some possible ways-
Irrigation techniques like- drip/sprinkler etc.
Limited use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides-
use of natural manure
Commercial farming- one plantation and one other
The introduction of modern western style farming
techniques in LEDCs during the late 1960's and
Norman Borlaug- 1940’s researched on wheat
Supported by Rockefeller and Ford foundations- a
lot of work done on varieties of rice- especially in
Introduction of HYVs
Advantages of GR
Increased food production- improved food trade
Helped solve problem of food shortage-
Shorter growing period- farmers could grow 2-3
crops in the same duration
Consumers had access to different types of crops
Some farmers in LEDCs gained financially
Disadvantages of GR
Expensive for some farmer- HYVs were not cheap
Heavily rely on Insecticides and fertilizers increasing
chances of euthrophication
Not suitable to the local palate as the taste changed
Natural varieties lost
Foreign dependence increased (tariffs and subsidies
became very important)
Mechanization increased leading to umemployment
GM crops Vs Organic Crops
Genetically modified- so look/production was better
but taste is not- though uniform-led to unnecessary
growth in size/shape/texture of crops- effects on
humans still not known-destruction of native species
Organic- grown the natural way- takes longer-more
expensive-but healthy food.
The World Food Summit of 1996 defined food
security as existing “when all people at all times have
access to sufficient, safe, nutritious food to maintain
a healthy and active life”.
Its 3 pillars are-
Disease of affluence and Poverty