When did agriculture begin in africa


Farming did eventually emerge independently in West Africa at about 3000 BCE. It first appeared in the fertile plains on the border between present-day Nigeria and Cameroon. It is possible there finally was a “Garden of Eden” there to “trap” people into early farming.

Why is agriculture important in Africa?

“ Agriculture is the most important sector of the African economy and will have to be its driving engine out of poverty. It accounts for 65% of the continent’s employment and 75% of its domestic trade,” the Director-General of the UN Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO), Kandeh K. Yumkella, said in a news release.

What type of Agriculture does Africa have?

Types of Subsistence Agriculture

  • Intensive Subsistence Agriculture. This is the largest type of subsistence farming that people around the world still practice. …
  • Shifting Cultivation. The next type of farming is shifting cultivation. …
  • Pastoral Nomadism. …

What are the major crops grown in Africa?

what are the main crops grown in africa

  • Food For Life – Ecological Farming in Kenya
  • Early History of Cash Crop Agriculture in Africa 1880- 1930
  • Profitable Crops to grow in 2021|| CROPS that will make you RICH #farming, #farmsetup, #agriculture

What cash crops are grown in Africa?


  • Corn. It is the most widely produced feed grain in the United States, the majority of which goes towards feeding livestock. …
  • Cotton. …
  • Fruit. …
  • Tree Nuts. …
  • Rice. …
  • Soybean and Oil Crops. …
  • Sugar and Sweeteners. …
  • Vegetables.

When and where did agriculture begin?

The Zagros Mountain range, which lies at the border between Iran and Iraq, was home to some of the world’s earliest farmers. Sometime around 12,000 years ago, our hunter-gatherer ancestors began trying their hand at farming.

Did farming start in Africa?

The independent origin of African agriculture. However, farming did eventually emerge independently in West Africa in about 3000 BCE (some estimates state even a little earlier), in the fairly lush and habitable savanna on the border between present-day Nigeria and Cameroon.

When was the beginning of agriculture started?

approximately 10,000 years agoAgricultural communities developed approximately 10,000 years ago when humans began to domesticate plants and animals. By establishing domesticity, families and larger groups were able to build communities and transition from a nomadic hunter-gatherer lifestyle dependent on foraging and hunting for survival.

Where did the earliest farmers develop in Africa?

Farming in this region probably began in West Africa, south of the desert about 3000 BCE (some estimates are even a little earlier). The first farming started in the fairly lush and habitable savannah on the border between present-day Nigeria and Cameroon.

How early did African farmers live?

African farmers arrived in southern Africa around 250 AD, which is about 1 000 years ago, from further north in Africa. They were Bantu-speaking people and lived in an era that archaeologists call the Iron Age.

Where did farming first occur?

Until now, researchers believed farming was “invented” some 12,000 years ago in the Cradle of Civilization — Iraq, the Levant, parts of Turkey and Iran — an area that was home to some of the earliest known human civilizations.

What is the history of agriculture in Nigeria?

The history of agriculture in Nigeria dates far back to the pre-colonial era. Subsistence agriculture was overwhelmingly dominant on the eve of European colonial rule in Nigeria. In this enterprise, food production featured prominently and there was self-sufficiency in the food supply.

Where did farming start?

Agriculture originated in a few small hubs around the world, but probably first in the Fertile Crescent, a region of the Near East including parts of modern-day Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Israel and Jordan.

What is the history of land and agriculture in Africa?

PRIOR to the beginning of food production, pastoralists and farmers began movements across the continent that transformed African societies ultimately leading to complex political groupings. The beginning of modern day history in Africa can be established partly from the introduction and development …

When did Africa start?

The beginning of modern day history in Africa can be established partly from the introduction and development of agricultural systems, domestic cultivation and cattle herding rooted in the years between 11000 and 3500 BC. During this period, the African climate was much wetter. The height of the wet period occurred between 9000 and 6000 BC.

What were the crops grown in Sudan?

Raffia, oil palm, palm, peas, groundnuts and kola nuts were also grown, and the palm products growing in the vicinity were exploited. By this stage guinea fowl had also been domesticated. Wild sorghum was domesticated and cultivated in Central Sudan. At the same time pottery vessels to store grain and carry water were being created.

What is the use of iron in Africa?

Iron was used in Africa for tools and for weapons. The use of metal was vital in accelerating …

Why was iron used in Africa?

Iron was used in Africa for tools and for weapons. The use of metal was vital in accelerating agricultural development as well as paving the way for the nascent industrialisation. This advance enabled more land to be cleared for agricultural purposes and for hunting skills to be improved and to become far more effective.

Where did bananas come from?

Bananas were added to millet as a staple food for sea faring vessels; it is quite likely that bananas reached the Indian sub-continent from East Africa.

Where did agriculture come from?

Crops originating from Africa such as pearl millet, sorghum and cow peas were introduced and also found in south-east Asia.

What was Central Africa’s economic revolution?

It started in the north, where a new dry phase in the Earth’s history forced people to make better use of a more limited part of their environment as the desert spread southward once more. Hunters who had roamed the savanna settled beside the rivers and perfected their skills as fishermen. Gatherers who had harvested wild grain on the plains settled beside lakes, where they could sow some of their gleanings as seed in the moist and fertile soils left by the waters that withdrew at the end of each wet season. The northern border of Central Africa became one of the cradles of the world’s food-producing revolution.

Where did cereal farming originate?

A type of cereal farming based on wild seed of the millet and sorghum families was first developed in the northern savanna. Millet farming became particularly successful in the tropics because, unlike wheat and barley, it did not require the long daylight hours of summer that occur in the temperate climes.

What was the basis of the new root farming?

The white Guinea yam, Dioscorea rotundata, was the basis of the new root farming, which enabled the population to grow in the northern savanna from about 5000 bc. The second phase of the local agricultural revolution was even more important and had an impact over a wide area of the tropical world. A type of cereal farming based on wild seed …

How long did it take for the Bantu language to spread?

They were carried into new frontier lands by pioneers seeking less-crowded spaces. Within 1,000 to 2,000 years the eastern Bantu languages had spread across the northern border of Central Africa to reach the highlands of East Africa.

What was the main carbohydrate of Central African people?

Steamed, baked, fried, or boiled, the banana became the staple carbohydrate of many Central African peoples, and they washed it down with a banana beer rich in nutrients. The agricultural revolution in Central Africa was paralleled by another nutritional change as people became more skilled at catching fish.

Where did bananas originate?

This was the banana family ( Musaceae ), originally domesticated in the islands of Southeast Asia. Banana plants, like yam tubers, were propagated by cuttings and roots rather than by seeds, but they gradually spread from neighbour to neighbour until the crop had become a dominant one in many parts of Central Africa.

Where did the Gatherers gather their grain?

Gatherers who had harvested wild grain on the plains settled beside lakes, where they could sow some of their gleanings as seed in the moist and fertile soils left by the waters that withdrew at the end of each wet season. The northern border of Central Africa became one of the cradles of the world’s food-producing revolution.

When did agriculture start in Egypt?

Early Agriculture in Egypt. As early as 7000 BC, people had already settled in the Nile valley. By around 5000 BC, the Egyptians had gradually adopted agriculture, departing from a hunter-gatherer society. Reasons that enhanced development of early Agriculture in Egypt.

When was rice first grown in Africa?

In West Africa, domestic animals and serial agriculture were acquired from the then fertile and green Sahara by 1500 BC. African rice, which was first cultivated in the Middle Niger lake region, was among the crops grown. Yams may have been grown earlier than any other crops.

What is the method of irrigation used in ancient Egypt?

Irrigation technique in ancient Egypt was characterised by Shadoof and Basin methods in addition to construction of dykes to direct water to the farms during drought. A Shadoof is a wooden device consisting of a long pole swinging up and down between two supporting wooden posts.

What factors promoted agriculture in ancient Egypt?

Factors that promoted (facilitated) agriculture in ancient Egypt. The river Nile, which provided the water needed for irrigation and for domestic use. The fertile soil and the warm climate of the Nile Valley. Invention and use of irrigation technique, characterised by Shadoof and Basin methods. Availability of food crops …

Why did farmers have several seasons in a year?

Farmers had several seasons in a year and, because of irrigation, no longer depended on annual Nile Valley floods. Introduction and adoption of iron technology in Africa by 1000 AD, which enabled the Egyptians to make and use iron tools like ploughs, which made farming more efficient. Early Agriculture in Egypt.

What were the first tools that Egypt used to develop agriculture?

Use of implements like sticks, knives, axes, sickles, wooden and bronze hoes and others of their kind, which eased farming.

How did the invention of wooden sticks, knives and wooden hoes help the Egyptians?

Availability of slave labour made crop farming a success. The invention and use of implements that included wooden sticks, knives and wooden hoes enabled the farmers to increase their yields. The existence of writing in Egypt helped the Egyptians to keep accurate records of seasons and volume of food.

What is farming in history?

Farming is the practice of breeding animals or growing crops for food or clothes. Human ancestors stopped relying on hunting and gathering for food and began farming about 10 000 years ago. This change affected the way society worked as people began living in larger groups because of the availability of food.

What did the early farmers grow?

The early farmers grew crops and this shows that, unlike the San and the Khoikhoi who were always moving around, they lived more settled lives. They grew crops on small pieces of land where they lived. On this land, they grew watermelons, pumpkins, beans, mealies and sorghum. These crops needed summer rainfall, so they lived in parts of the country where there was sufficient rainfall. Their cattle were their wealth. Cattle provided them with milk and meat. They made butter from milk. When a man wanted to marry a woman, he would donate cattle as lobola to her father. Cattle could be exchanged with traders for other items they needed. They used cattle skins to make clothes, thongs, bags and shields. Cattle dung was used for making floors for huts and for fuel to make fires. Sheep and goats were also kept in the kraals.

Why were cattle important to African farmers?

Cattle was important to African farmers because they were so useful. They were a symbol of riches and power and were used as “lobola”, or bride price. Sources: www.zakerna.homestead.com. African farmers had much larger herds of cattle than Khoikhoi farmers, but their animals were also very important.

Why did African farmers live in larger communities than the San or Khoikhoi?

African farmers lived in larger communities than the San or Khoikhoi because more people were needed to look after herds of animals and to work the land. The areas they lived in could also support larger groups because it wasn’t as dry and hot as the western part of southern Africa.

How did the farmers extract iron and copper from rock?

The farmers knew how to extract iron and copper from rock and they built furnaces for this process. These furnaces were made hot by using bellows made from animal skin to blow air into the fire. They were very hot and separated the iron ore from the rock. The farmers made the furnaces. This was called smelting. This iron was then reheated so that it became soft, after which it was hammered and made into a useful tool. This was called forging. Tools, weapons and ornaments were made from these metals. These tools were very important to the farmers. They needed axes to cut down trees and hoes to break up the soil, weed the fields and harvest their crops. Their weapons were arrowheads, knives and spears.

What were the villages called in the early days of farming?

The huts were made of clay and the roofs were made of thatch. The floors were smeared with cattle dung. The villages were called homesteads. An elder or headman led the homestead. His hut was opposite the main entrance and his most important wives had huts nearest to him. Each chiefdom (consisting of several homesteads) was ruled by a chief. Often it was the wealthiest man who became the chief. He was supported by a council of elders and warriors who protected the land, the crops and the people. The chief made decisions for the people. The council of elders made sure the chief took into account the needs of the people and that he had listened to everybody’s opinions before making a decision.

Where did the farmers settle?

The Khoikhoi were herders of animals and settled in one place for a long time before moving on. Around 2000 years ago, many grain farmers from East and Central Africa moved to what we now call Southern Africa.

Where did agriculture originate?

By 8000 BC, farming was entrenched on the banks of the Nile. About this time, agriculture was developed independently in the Far East, probably in China, with rice rather than wheat as the primary crop. Maize was domesticated from the wild grass teosinte in southern Mexico by 6700 BC.

How long ago did agriculture start?

Wild grains were collected and eaten from at least 105,000 years ago.

What were the first foods that were domesticated in the New World?

The potato (8000 BC), tomato, pepper (4000 BC), squash (8000 BC) and several varieties of bean (8000 BC onwards) were domesticated in the New World. Agriculture was independently developed on the island of New Guinea.

What are the social issues that modern agriculture has raised?

Modern agriculture has raised social, political, and environmental issues including overpopulation, water pollution, biofuels, genetically modified organisms, tariffs and farm subsidies. In response, organic farming developed in the twentieth century as an alternative to the use of synthetic pesticides.

How has agriculture changed since 1900?

Since 1900, agriculture in the developed nations, and to a lesser extent in the developing world, has seen large rises in productivity as human labour has been replaced by mechanization, and assisted by synthe tic fertilizers, pesticides, and selective breeding.

What were the crops that were introduced in the Middle Ages?

In the Middle Ages, both in the Islamic world and in Europe, agriculture was transformed with improved techniques and the diffusion of crop plants, including the introduction of sugar, rice, cotton and fruit trees such as the orange to Europe by way of Al-Andalus.

What was the Bronze Age?

The Bronze Age, from c. 3300 BC, witnessed the intensification of agriculture in civilizations such as Mesopotamian Sumer, ancient Egypt, the Indus Valley Civilisation of the Indian subcontinent, ancient China, and ancient Greece.


This chapter reviews the current state of knowledge of early agriculture in sub-Saharan Africa from its inception in different regions to c. 500 CE. Pastoralism was the earliest form of food production in sub-Saharan Africa, developing first in North Africa c.

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Where did agriculture originate?

Origins of agriculture. The first agriculture in Africa began in the heart of the Sahara Desert, which in 5200 BC was far more moist and densely populated than today. Several native species were domesticated, most importantly pearl millet, sorghum and cowpeas, which spread through West Africa and the Sahel.

What is African economic history?

African economic history often focuses on explanations of poverty and obscures other aspects such as the achievements of African farmers, traders and states, including improvements in food security, and episodes of economic growth. Farms in Malawi, 2010.

What were the main trades of the Berber people?

Archaeologists have found that evidence of trade in luxury items like metals and shells across the entirety of the continent were the main trades of the Berber people, lived in dry areas and became nomadic herders, while in the savannah grasslands, cultivated crops and thus permanent settlement were possible.

What were the first humans?

The earliest humans were hunter gatherers who were living in small, family groupings. Even then there was considerable trade that could cover long distances. Archaeologists have found that evidence of trade in luxury items like precious metals and shells across the entirety of the continent. African economic history often focuses on explanations …

Where did bananas grow?

The banana and other crops allowed for more intensive cultivation in the tropical regions of Africa, this was most notable in the Great Lakes region, an area with excellent soil, that saw many cities and states form, their populations being fed largely.

Which European countries were developing their own trade with Africa?

Soon, however, other European powers such as France, Denmark, the Netherlands and Britain were developing their own trade with Africa, and they had fewer restrictions. The major European imperial powers in Africa were Portugal, Great Britain, France, and to a lesser extent Germany, Belgium, Spain and Italy.

Where did iron work originate?

Especially from Nubia, ideas and technologies from the Middle East and Europe reached the rest of Africa. Historians believe that iron working developed independently in Africa.

When did rice and millet farming start?

The origins of rice and millet farming date to around 6,000 B.C.E.

When was rice first grown?

The origins of rice and millet farming date to around 6,000 B.C.E. The world’s oldest known rice paddy fields, discovered in eastern China in 2007, reveal evidence of ancient cultivation techniques such as flood and fire control.

What mutation occurred during the spread of farming into southeastern Europe?

But at some point during the spread of farming into southeastern Europe, a mutation occurred for lactose tolerance that increased in frequency through natural selection thanks to the nourishing benefits of milk.

What was the farming revolution?

Taking root around 12,000 years ago, agriculture triggered such a change in society and the way in which people lived that its development has been dubbed the ” Neolithic Revolution.”. Traditional hunter-gatherer lifestyles, followed by humans since their evolution, were swept aside in favor of permanent settlements …

What is the meaning of “agriculture”?

agriculture. Noun. the art and science of cultivating land for growing crops (farming) or raising livestock (ranching). annual plant. Noun. plant with a life cycle of no more than one year, and often much less. barley. Noun. grass cultivated as a grain.

How long ago did goats come to Europe?

Dates for the domestication of these animals range from between 13,000 to 10,000 years ago. Genetic studies show that goats and other livestock accompanied the westward spread of agriculture into Europe, helping to revolutionize Stone Age society. While the extent to which farmers themselves migrated west remains a subject of debate, …

Where did the wild produce originate?

The wild progenitors of crops including wheat, barley and peas are traced to the Near East region. Cereals were grown in Syria as long as 9,000 years ago, while figs were cultivated even earlier; prehistoric seedless fruits discovered in the Jordan Valley suggest fig trees were being planted some 11,300 years ago. Though the transition from wild harvesting was gradual, the switch from a nomadic to a settled way of life is marked by the appearance of early Neolithic villages with homes equipped with grinding stones for processing grain.

Where did farming originate?

The idea that farming began in a single population came from initial archaeological discoveries in one part of the Mideast — the Southern Levant , says Melinda Zeder, an archaeologist at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, who wasn’t involved in the study.

Where was the first farm in the world?

The Zagros Mountain range, which lies at the border between Iran and Iraq, was home to some of the world’s earliest farmers. The Zagros Mountain range, which lies at the border between Iran and Iraq, was home to some of the world’s earliest farmers. Sometime around 12,000 years ago, our hunter-gatherer ancestors began trying their hand at farming.

Where did the Stone Age farmers come from?

Just last month, he published a study that found that late Stone Age farmers from the Turkey region had migrated north into Europe and introduced farming there. So understandably, he had expected to be able to trace European agriculture all the way back to the eastern Fertile Crescent. But that’s not what the DNA said.

When did hunter-gatherers start farming?

Sometime around 12,000 years ago, our hunter-gatherer ancestors began trying their hand at farming. First, they grew wild varieties of crops like peas, lentils and barley and herded wild animals like goats and wild oxen. Centuries later, they switched to farming full time, breeding both animals and plants, creating new varieties and breeds.

Did farming start in the fertile crescent?

In other words, farming was long believed to have been started by one group of ancestral humans. But a new study suggests something different — that multiple groups of people in the Fertile Crescent started agriculture, and these groups were genetically distinct from one another.

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