Agriculture is the production of food and goods through farming. Agriculture was the key development that led to the rise of human civilization with the husbandry of domesticated animals and plants (i.e. crops) creating food surpluses that enabled the development of more densely populated areas.
ONeNess Foundations Diaspora USA believes that agriculture is a productive trade and yields income in many ways. It can feed the family and the sale from the harvest can be utilized in paying for education and other necessities of life. Agriculture will also enable more people become more involved in food production locally, have a sense of worth and belonging as well as experience the dignity in labor by having gainful employment.
There are three main reasons for the success of guaranteed employment act
- Strong government commitment
- Proper targeting of the rural poor and underprivileged
- Employment opportunities during the lean season
Most notably, the employment program provides many jobs to women: about 47 percent of people who received employment under the program were women, far exceeding the targeted 33 percent. Other major benefits include increased rural wages, reduced distress migration, barren and uncultivated land use, and empowerment of the weaker section of society.
According to the World Bank, the value of food on domestic markets in Africa is projected to increase from US$313 billion in 2010 to US$1 trillion in 2030. World prices are high and expected to remain so for at least the medium term. Income growth, population growth, and urbanization in Africa are increasing the demand for imported food faster than the supply of domestically produced substitutes; food imports surged ahead of exports as recently as 2003 and continue to climb. Denser patterns of settlement are causing marketing costs to fall and returns to investments in primary processing of raw products to rise. This is the opportunity before African producers. Local producers can capture thriving domestic and regional markets only if they become more competitive. Measures that reduce the costs of production (such as dissemination of improved technology) and the costs of marketing (such as investment in transportation and infrastructure) will enable increased profitability and reduce food costs. Agricultural marketing covers the services involved in moving an agricultural product from the farm to the consumer. Numerous interconnected activities are involved in doing this, such as planning production, growing and harvesting, grading, packing, transport, storage, agro- and food processing, distribution, advertising and sale.
From the nation’s earliest days, farming has held a crucial place in the American economy and culture. Farmers play an important role in any society, of course, since they feed people. But farming has been particularly valued in the United States. Early in the nation’s life, farmers were seen as exemplifying economic virtues such as hard work, initiative, and self-sufficiency. The potential role of agriculture in contributing to economic growth, and develops a framework for understanding and quantifying this contribution points to the key areas where positive linkages, not necessarily well-mediated by markets, might exist, and it highlights the empirical difficulties in establishing their quantitative magnitude and direction of impact. Evidence on the impact of investments in rural education and of nutrition on economic growth cannot be underestimated.
Growth and poverty reduction
The role of agriculture sees a major role for agriculture in development through the linkages of the agricultural with the non-agricultural sector. Agricultural growth can lead to strong multiplier effects in the non-farm economy. Agriculture is a source of both labor and capital for non-agricultural production. Factor markets are the markets where factors of production (labor, land or capital) are traded and the equilibrium price of the factor is determined. Small farms can be drivers of change and play an important role in the rural economy, but at the same time may be left behind in the current rapid economic developments characterized by globalization, vertical change integration etc. Many small-scale farmers are diversifying their revenues by engaging in non-farm activities, and at the same time not investing in agriculture at a time when the demands on agricultural production in terms of technology and product quality are increasing. Because agriculture is no longer their main focus, farmers may not see the need to maximize the returns from farming.