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5.1 AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT

Economic activities are so varied. The term industry is used to cover a wide range of economic activities, which may involve making, supplying or delivering goods and services of a number of people.

Types of Economic Activities (Industries)
Primary Industries (Activities)
The simplest form of industries concerned with extraction of raw materials to be supplied to the other industries. Examples are Farming, Forestry, Fishing and Mining.
Secondary Industries (Activities)
These include both manufacturing and processing industries. In this category the raw materials are assembled or manufactured into finished goods. They are divided into two groups.
1. Heavy Industries
These are the industries, which produce heavy goods like metal goods, heavy chemical, locomotives and shipbuilding.
2. Light Industries
These are the industries, which produce light goods, example are like Textiles, making of electrical equipment, plastic goods, cosmetics, electronic gadgets, and toilet articles.
They involve re-processing of the partially manufactured goods to make more complex products like watches, radios, computers, books, clothes etc.
(i) Food processing, car assembly, manufacturing and building are secondary industries.

Tertiary Industries (Activities)
They are not a part of manufacturing at all but the industries whose jobs involve providing goods and services for the public. Examples are transport, trade, tourism, and entertainment, catering (hotel services) medicine (doctors).
Quaternary Industries (Activities)
These include people who provide specialist information and expertise to all the above sectors i.e. primary industry, secondary and tertiary industries. Example is research, design engineering (designers), and computer programming grown in summer in the region. In the wheat zone cotton, maize, potatoes, sugar beet, soya beans, peanuts, flax and tobacco are also grown. Nonetheless, Gargen vegetables are grown all over the country.
In the North and Northwest Grasslands Pastoral farming is dominant. Sheep, goats, cattle, horses and camels are reared. This area is too dry for arable farming since the amount of rainfall is usually below 500mm. In most parts of humid China, pigs and poultry are principal animals raised.
The Western Part
Is also too dry but there is farming around the oases (oases farming).
AGRICULTURAL (FARMING)
What is Agriculture?
Agriculture refers to a fundamental human activity, which involves cultivation of crops (arable farming) and domestication of animals (Livestock husbandry). It is categorized as primary industry since it involves the production of raw material that can be used by other industries.
IMPORTANCE OF AGRICULTURE
1. Food production for both people and animals. For example in the Corn Belt in America most of the maize produced (about 70% of the total production) is fed to the animals in the farm and the rest is used for other purposes including food for human being.
2. Provision of raw materials of production. For example, cotton production is very important for the manufacturing of clothes in the textile industries. In Tanzania cotton is grown in Mwanza and other regions and has been a great dynamo to the development of textile industries in Tanzania like MwaTex, Friendship textile mill, MuTex, Mbeya Tex, Karibu Textile Mills in Dar es Salaam etc.
3. Employment creation for the population which is growing fast. Some people are employed in the agricultural sector as laborers, managed etc.
4. Income generation for the government and individuals. The country can get foreign currency by exporting some cash crops like tea and coffee. Kenya for example exports tea to other countries like America, Tanzania etc where it is used for blending with other tea because of its high quality.
5. Provision of clothing materials as a result of growing fiber crops like cotton etc, which are later, used in the textile industries for manufacturing clothes.
6. It helps man to live settled life in village rather than wandering from place to place in search of the basic life necessities.
7. Generation of capital that can be invested in other sectors of the economy.
FACTORS INFLUENCING AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT (FARMING)
There are several factors which affect agricultural development and these are as follows.
1. Climate: Climate influences agriculture through the impact of rainfall, temperature and wind.
Rainfall: Where there is adequate rainfall a variety of crops can be grown. But where there is poor rainfall agriculture tends to have poor performance. For example, in arid areas like desert, regions agriculture is usually poor due to lack of rainfall. Rainfall also affects distribution of crops. Crops, which need high rainfall like bananas, will be grown in areas that experience high rainfall like the coastal lands of east Africa and highland areas. The crops that need slight rainfall (like cotton and wheat) will grow in the areas, which experience little (slight) rainfall.
Rainfall also can affect agricultural by causing destruction of crops and human settlement. This happens when there are floods. Floods are very common in Bangladesh and lowlands of China. Apart from floods heavy rainfall can cause soil erosion leading to the reduction of arable land and other property. These predicaments associated with climatic vagaries can lead to poor agricultural performance.
Temperature: Temperature affects germination of the seeds, growth rate and length of the growing season as well as soil development.
In warm areas plant growth takes place very fast unlike in the areas where the temperatures are very low like the tundra regions and highlands. Hence, moderate temperature like in Western parts of Europe encourages crop production and animal husbandry while where there temperature extremes (that is very high temperature or very low temperatures) agriculture tends to fail. If the area has very low temperatures the soils are frozen and hence lead to poor growth of crops and where the temperature is very high like in the tropical deserts the soils are very dry because of excessive evaporation hence discouraging plant growth and animal husbandry.
Microbial activities are also efficient where the temperature is high leading the high rate of organic decomposition and hence the addition of organic matter to the soil.
Optimum temperature for each crop encourages plant growth. Some crops need cool conditions and hence will be grow in areas which have cool conditions and hence will be grown in areas which have cool climate. Other crops need high temperatures and hence will be grown in the areas that have high temperature.
Wind: Wind effects physical damage to crops especially when there are stormy winds like tornadoes, hurricanes etc. It can also cause soil erosion especially where the surface is bare usually in the desert and semi desert areas. Wind also accelerate evaporation and hence loss of water from the soil. However, wind also help in the pollination process and seed dispersal.

2. Edaphic (Soil) factors
Soil also influences agriculture both positively and negatively. Good soils, which are fertile and deep, encourage positive development of agriculture while poor soils, that is, infertile soils discourage agricultural development.
Soil also determines distribution of crops over space. Crops which need acidic soils will grow in the areas which have acidic conditions while the crops which need slight alkalinity will grow in the areas which have alkaline soils like the halophytic plants which grow in the areas with saline soils.
3. Topographic (Relief)
Nature of the relied affects agriculture either positively or negatively. For example on steep slopes or hilly areas mechanization is difficult while where the area has gentle slopes or flat surface mechanization can be carried out easily. The prairies of Canada have been developed into extensive wheat cultivation because of the gently sloping undulating surface, which has allowed easy mechanization. The undulating surface also has made soil drainage take place very easily.
Flat areas facilitate transportation of crops from the forms to the storage or mar
ket places. Mountainous areas pose problems of transportation. Altitudes influence the variation in temperatures such that high altitudes with very low temperatures limit agricultural activities. Low lands are prone to flooding; hence, they discourage the development due to being free of floods.
Aspect is another topographical factor. The slopes, which receive more people sunshine and reliable rainfall are conducive the development of agricultural while the slopes which do not receive enough sunshine and experience rain-shadow effect (dryness) are not conducive for agricultural development.
4. Economic Factors
Capital availability can influence agricultural development. The places where people have high capital modern farming can easily take place due to investment in new and sophisticated agricultural facilities like tractors etc. But where farmers have low or poor capital agricultural tends to be poor due to poor level of investment.
5. Marketing system
Good marketing system encourages agricultural development while poor marketing system discourages development of agricultural. Price fluctuation in farm products is a big problem in the development of agriculture. Most farmers are discouraged due to the price fluctuation or low prices especially in the developing world. If prices are stable and are high, farmers can produce more and more so as to raise their living standards.
6. Social Factors
a). Divisions of labor: In some societies most of the work in the farm is done by women and children. This results in poor performance of agricultural activities.
b). Tribal customs also affect the rearing of animals and growing of crops. For example some tribes keep large number of animals for prestigious purposes while others for marriage purposes. They do not keep them for sale in order to improve their family life standards.
c). Religious beliefs affect much agricultural development. For example the Muslims do not keep pigs since they believe that pigs are not clean animals.
d). Ownership and inheritance of land. This encourages land fragmentation since the increase in the number of family members forces the family heads to divide the land into small plots. Such land, which has been fragmented into small plots, cannot allow easy mechanization.
e) Transport and communication ( infrastructures)
f)Social services such as water, school, power, health services.
7. Technological Factors
Where there is advanced technology, agriculture is also more advanced because of the use of the scientific methods. But where farmers have low level of technology due to low education agricultural performance is usually poor. This is caused by domination of traditional farming methods that employ simple tools and techniques.
8. Biotic Factors
These include the influence of animals and plants on the agricultural development. They can have both positive and negative effects as follows:-
a). Some animals and birds destroy crops and cause great loss to the formers. Other animals like lions attract livestock in the farms or in the grazing areas. But animals can also facilitate pollination in plants and encourage production of fruits.
b). Weeds also compete for food with crops leading to low production. Sometimes the weeds produce poisonous chemicals and end up killing the crops.

c). There are some insects and fungi, which attack crops and lead to great destruction and losses in the farms. Sometimes insects help in the pollination process in plants.
9. Demographic Factors
These are related to changes in population. The rapid expansion of population poses a problem of pressure for land leading to poor development of agricultural. Population pressure can cause land fragmentation and bring problems in applying mechanization in the farms, which are, after all, small in size. Sometimes due to the increase in population the farmlands are changed into settlement areas leading to the reduction of the size of the arable land.
Like wise, population expansion has brought the problem of high dependency ratio. This is due to the fact that the number of children and old people is greater that the young and energetic people. This has negative impacts on agriculture since children and old people are not effective or efficient in the production process.
EcoleBooks | GEOGRAPHY A LEVEL(FORM SIX) NOTES - 5.1 AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT(1)


EcoleBooks | GEOGRAPHY A LEVEL(FORM SIX) NOTES - 5.1 AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT(1)

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  • EcoleBooks | GEOGRAPHY A LEVEL(FORM SIX) NOTES - 5.1 AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT(1)

    Monday Hafithu, March 10, 2024 @ 5:30 am Reply

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