How does industrialization affect agriculture


The whole concept of industrial agriculture is recognized as unsustainable and has contributed greatly towards the infertility of soil, as well as, polluting the water reservoirs around the farms. The excessive use of pesticides also harms the quality of the crops. Another major drawback of industrialized farming is the loss of crop diversity.

However, industrialization also has resulted in an agriculture that degrades natural resources, depletes human resources, and destroys economic opportunities. An industrial agriculture is inherently incapable of maintaining its productivity and usefulness to society. It fails every test of sustainability.


What are the negative effects of industrial agriculture?

Industrial farming is bad for the health of workers, eaters, and downstream neighbors. Here are some of its costly health impacts: Pesticide toxicity. Herbicides and insecticides commonly used in agriculture have been associated with both acute poisoning and long-term chronic illness. Water pollution from fertilizer runoff contaminates …

What are the pros and cons of industrial agriculture?

What Are the Pros of Factory Farming?

  1. It keeps prices down for consumers. Factory farming allows for livestock products to be produce on a large economic scale. …
  2. It allows automation to help provide food resources. In the past, farming meant an intense amount of daily manual labor to produce a crop. …
  3. It improves production efficiencies. …

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What are the advantages of industrial agriculture?

Pros of Using Industrial Agriculture

  • Industrial agriculture comes with a lot of benefits which are listed below.
  • It increases agricultural production in lesser time.
  • It makes life easier by bringing down the cost of agricultural produce.
  • It boosts the economy.
  • It creates employment opportunities for the skilled and unskilled.

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How does industrial agriculture affect the environment?

Industrial agriculture negatively affects soil health and the atmosphere, by reducing organic matter and releasing carbon. Monocropping is the practice of growing the same crop on the same plot of land, year after year. This practice depletes the soil of nutrients (making the soil less productive over time), reduces organic matter in soil and …


What is industrialization in relationship to agriculture?

Briefly stated, agricultural industrialization refers to “the increasing consolidation of farms and to vertical coordination (contracting and integration) among the stages of the food and fiber system” (Council on Food, Agriculture and Rcsourcc Economics, 1994a, p. 1).

What are the advantages and disadvantages of industrialized agriculture?

Here are the pros and cons:Pros of Industrial Agriculture.It increases food production. Large-scale industrial farms have an advantage over traditional farms when it comes to producing food fast and in larger amounts. … Cons of Industrial Agriculture.It increases the risk of animal cruelty. … Conclusion.

How industrialization has benefited agriculture?

Industrialized Agriculture could be beneficial to the environment through the production of large scale livestock. Their waste can be used to accelerate nutrient cycling, this will definitely reduce soil degradation due to intensified land use, reduced fallow and less use of inorganic fertilizer.

What are three major problems of industrial agriculture?

Industrial agriculture has led to several public health concerns such as antimicrobial resistance, impacts on occupational and community health, and transfer of zoonotic diseases to humans (Marshall & Levy, 2011).

How did industrialization affect agriculture?

Industrialization: Effects on agriculture. The sustained growth of non-agricultural employment and the transfer of part of the rural labour force to the towns have made it possible to stabilize the number of agricultural workers and halt the growth of population pressure on the land, thus creating the conditions for improved labour productivity

What was the basic daily intake of agriculture in 1982?

For the principal basic staples, agriculture supplies only a small proportion of needs: as statistics for 1982 show, the basic daily intake was largely covered by imports: 75% for wheat; 70% for pulses; 80% for vegetable oils; 50% for milk products and eggs; 100% for sugar.

How did the agricultural exodus 15 work?

The agricultural exodus 15 was achieved without migration or involved only short-distance migration. Relations between industrialized towns and the rural areas have restructured the regional space to favour agriculture by keeping the population on farms and increasing the incomes of peasant-worker groups.

How many people were employed in Algeria between 1967 and 1984?

Between 1967 and 1984, the working population increased at an annual rate of 4.3% or 1.602.000 persons. Between 1966 and 1980, according to the Ministry of Planning, some 1.5 million new jobs were created, which meant that everyone coming on to the labour market could be offered a job. Sources: Algeria.

What was the average rate of agriculture in Yugoslavia between 1950 and 1980?

In Yugoslavia, between 1950 and 1980 industry grew at an annual average rate of 8.6%; and in China. 10% for three decades. The number of non-agricultural jobs was enough to absorb virtually all the natural population growth, both urban and rural, but it did not lead to an absolute decline in the number employed in agriculture.

Do imports affect domestic prices?

Imports are not quantitatively sufficient to affect the prices of domestic products. This limited availability, or relative shortage, which often takes the form of interruptions of supply, makes it possible to market all local products at market prices, which are distinctly higher than the prices fixed by the state.

What were the negative effects of the agricultural revolution?

Another negative that came from the Agricultural Revolution was the necessary conditions needed for efficient farming, such as; adequate farm buildings, access of roads, drainage of wetlands, transport facilities for marketing, and sources of finance for farmers.These were negative effects seen across Europe by many who joined in the Revolution.

Why was agriculture the largest source of employment?

Though the labor was difficult, agricultural work became the largest source of employment because of the ‘self-supply’ benefit, which is the ability to stock their own food stores through their own work.

How did Jethro Tull contribute to the Industrial Revolution?

Jethro Tull contributed to the industrial revolution by innovating new machines to greatly increase agricultural productivity. 9 Tull realized the importance of well cultivated soil and accessing the minerals below the topsoil.

Why did farmers work six days a week?

1 2. Before the Industrial Revolution, agriculture workers labored six days a week, from sun up to sun down, just to keep their crops growing. 1 Certain seasons were more demanding than others, specifically the plowing and harvest seasons. 2 Because of the intensity and necessity of agricultural labor, it was the largest employment source in …

What was the first invention of the Industrial Revolution?

Eli Whitney another inventor born in America in 1765, made another key invention of the industrial revolution, the cotton gin (picture to the right) which was invented in 1794. A cotton gin is a machine that quickly separates cotton fibers from their seeds. The invention of the cotton gin allowed for much greater productivity than manual labor, resulting in this invention greatly increasing the production rate for clothing and other cotton goods. Despite the cotton gins success, Whitney made little money from his invention due to patent-infringement issues. For his work, he is credited as a pioneer of American manufacturing. 16

What were the effects of mechanization on agriculture?

One consequence of mechanization and other agricultural advances was that farms grew larger. Agriculture became a business and favored the formation of estates. By 1815, the majority of farms in Britain were owned by a minority of landowners (often absentee) who saw their holdings as financial properties, largely independent of tradition and community values. They invested in more agricultural innovations, changing agriculture even more. Larger farms were more profitable, and led to the dominance of plantation farming, which continues to this day with agribusiness. (The value of U.S. agricultural exports in 1999 exceeded $50 billion.)

How did agriculture change in the 1700s?

Agricultural technology changed more dramatically in the 1700s than at any time since the introduction of draft animals millennia before. Mechanized planting and threshing made farms more efficient, threw workers off the farm, and altered the very shape of the countryside. Scientific approaches were applied to agriculture, and books helped spread new ideas and approaches. At the end of the century, cotton became a force for change: Whitney’s gin made cotton profitable for the first time in the American South and helped support the continuation of slavery. Off the farm cotton mills led the way in industrialization. Farm mechanization made food supplies more stable and more plentiful, supporting a surge in population and leading to unprecedented growth in cities.

What were the three inventions that led to the Industrial Revolution?

In the eighteenth century, the world witnessed a revolution in agriculture led by three inventions—the seed drill, the threshing machine, and the cotton gin. Complementing these new tools were new ideas, set forth in books. The agricultural revolution paved the way for the Industrial Revolution, both by showing how the new ideas of science could be put to practical use and by freeing the manpower needed for factories.

Why is industrial agriculture important?

The crops grown using industrial agriculture is meant to feed the masses and ensure food security across the world. The use of chemicals, mechanized tools, and other advanced technology are some of the reasons why industrial agriculture is able to produce massive quantities of food from farms.

What is industrial agriculture?

In this type of agriculture, the focus is mainly on maximizing the yield of fewer types of crops for more sales and greater profits, instead of diversification of the crops. The crops grown using industrial agriculture is meant to feed the masses and ensure food security across the world.

Why are large industrial farms better suited than traditional small to medium farms?

Large industrial farms are better suited than traditional small to medium farms for mechanized agriculture practices, which directly results in higher yields of crops, which has been the basic driving purpose of the industrialization efforts since the 1950s, to ensure food security of a rapidly growing global population.

Why are modern farms so dependent on technology?

This means that there is always a need for better and more efficient technology in these farms, which in turn creates higher demand from scientists and engineers to innovate, thus keeping the benchmark of development and innovation high at all times.

What is industrial agriculture?

Industrial agriculture is the large-scale, intensive production of crops and animals, often involving chemical fertilizers on crops or the routine , harmful use of antibiotics in animals (as a way to compensate for filthy conditions, even when the animals are not sick). It may also involve crops that are genetically modified, …

How does crop farming affect the environment?

There is soil depletion and soil infertility related to monoculture, soil erosion, water pollution, loss of biodiversity, increased greenhouse gas emissions (particularly methane and nitrous oxide) from cow digestion and manure as well as nitrogen-based fertilizers, and pesticide overuse leading to potential pesticide toxicity (especially in farmworkers). Studies show that employees of CAFOs are at risk from potentially deadly antibiotic-resistant bacteria; workers can also bring these bacteria home. Farmworkers and local communities can also be exposed to hazardous fumes wafting from unlined, uncovered pits of animal waste and other sources. And despite the fact that CAFOs often must meet permitting requirements and are regulated by both state and federal agencies, NRDC has discovered a worrying lack of transparency. Discrepancies between data collected by states and the EPA suggest the EPA is unaware of the size, number, and location of CAFOs across the country and what those operations are doing to control pollution. And that’s just for starters. Here are some areas of particular concern.

How much manure was produced in 2012?

In 2012 livestock and poultry raised in the largest CAFOs in the United States produced 369 million tons of manure, according to an analysis of USDA figures done by Food & Water Watch. All that waste has to go somewhere.

Why is monoculture bad for the soil?

Monoculture also renders the soil prone to rapid erosion, since the practice leaves the soil bare outside of the crop’s growing season. Perhaps more problematically, repeatedly planting the same crop invites pests that prey on a certain plant to wait around the same spot for their favorite food to return.

Why do industrial farms use antibiotics?

Industrial farms overuse antibiotics, feeding large amounts of the drugs—often the same ones used to treat human illnesses—to healthy animals to help them survive in crowded, dirty CAFOs. Low-level exposure to antibiotics creates the perfect breeding ground for superbugs, those pathogens that antibiotics can’t kill.

How long has agriculture been around?

Human agriculture has existed for about 12,000 years, and industrial farming is less than a century old. But the latter has become so prevalent that sustainable farming practices are now sometimes branded “alternative.”

What did ancient farmers plant?

Ancient farmers planted seeds from only the sweetest fruits, generation after generation, ensuring that any genetic variations that increased sweetness survived. By selecting plants with increasingly white, increasingly tiny, flowers, farmers turned a weedy little herb into cauliflower. It was slow but effective.




  • Specialization aims to increase efficiency by narrowing the range of tasks and roles involved in production. A diversified farmer, for example, might need to manage and care for many different vegetable crops, a composting operation, a flock of egg-laying hens, a sow, and her litter of piglets. Specialized farmers, by contrast, can focus all their knowledge, skills, and equipment on …

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  • Like work on an assembly line, specialized labor often involves repetitive tasks that can be performed by machines. This meant routine jobs like sowing seeds, harvesting crops, milking cows, and feeding and slaughtering animals could be mechanized, reducing (and in some cases eliminating) the need for human and animal labor. Between 1900 and 2000, the share of the U.S…

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Chemical and Pharmaceutical Inputs

  • The early 1900s saw the introduction of synthetic fertilizers and chemical pesticides, innovations that have become a hallmark of industrial crop production. In just 12 years, between 1964 and 1976, synthetic and mineral fertilizer applications on U.S. crops nearly doubled, while pesticide use on major U.S. crops increased by 143 percent.10 The shi…

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  • Consolidation in agriculture is the shift toward fewer and larger farms, usually as a result of large farms getting larger and smaller farms going out of business. In the late 1950s, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Ezra Taft Benson exemplified government pressure to consolidate when he called on farmers to “get big or get out.”15 Between 1950 and 1997, the average U.S. farm more than dou…

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Market Concentration

  • Market share is the proportion of an industry’s sales earned by one company. In the U.S. market for salty snacks, for example, 64 percent of sales are earned by PepsiCo.19 When a small number of companies have a large market share of an industry, the market for that industry is said to be concentrated. Markets become more concentrated when companies take over, or merge with, th…

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  • The following list of suggested resources is intended as a starting point for further exploration, and is not in any way comprehensive. Some materials may not reflect the views of the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future.

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  • 1. Ikerd JE. Sustaining the profitability of agriculture. In: Economist’s Role in the Agricultural Sustainability Paradigm. San Antonio, TX: University of Missouri; 1996. 2. MacDonald J, Korb P, Hoppe R. Farm Size and the Organization of U.S. Crop Farming. 2013. 3. Rifkin J. Beyond Beef: The Rise and Fall of the Cattle Culture. New York, New York: Plume; 1993. 4. Ikerd JE. Sustainin…

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