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Back in the early years, people have their very own way to survive in this world. They went for hunting edible animals in the juggle or gather in a village or place so that they could obtain food supplies. Could we imagine how tough it was for these people merely to get food for living, so that they could continue their life and preserve the continuation of human being? But thankfully it changed in 1700s when people started to make agricultural revolution, by that means people domesticated plants and animals so that they could sustain their life by having food stocks that they preserved.
Although there were group of hunters that still hunting during that time, the agricultural revolution has impacted many or should I say most of the people in this world. They started to make their own land into agriculture field where they could use it for farming and animal’s production. During this stage, usually the production of food supply and the crops yield just adequate for their own family supplies and it was not for commercial purpose.
When it came to another stage of Agricultural revolution, where this revolution brought a very significant impact in civilization and economic development; in which the era was called by the dawn of civilization. The Agricultural Revolution resulted in a food surplus, not unlike the original agricultural revolution which allowed civilization to develop. The agricultural revolution was a period of agricultural development between the 18th century and the end of the 19th century, which we could describe as one of vast and rapid increase in agricultural productivity and drastic improvements in farm technology.
This idea of Agricultural revolution can be proved, as more experimental farmers has developed good and healthy seeds, cross breeding animals that potentially increase their life and prevent any diseases, nutritious soil or dirt, effective fertilizers, a good and efficient system of drainage and fencing. In addition, these enhancements of science have reasonably produced an efficient fertilizer thus it was one of major factors that increased the productivity of soil. Lastly, there were also multitude of great inventions such as seed drills, plow, moldboard and many more.
These machines or inventions have made the farmer’s work became easier than it ever was and it also increased the productivity of crops and animals. I found a quote from one of my readings and it effectively related to agricultural revolution, “Thus not only will the same amount of land be able to feed more people; but each of them, with less labor, will be employed more productively and will be able to satisfy his needs better.” (Condorcet, 1793) There were a number of the factors that triggered the idea of agricultural revolution and new farming method in that particular of time, in which obviously because the lack of food supplies while at the same time they also were facing overpopulation. Furthermore, people were desperately trying to overcome this deficient issue and came up with the ideas to increase the production of food by planting on their own. Apart from that, the industrial revolution also played a crucial role for agricultural revolution to rise. Both of these revolutions were closely related because of the idea of having better living and civilization.
In fact, it is impossible for industrial revolution to take place without agricultural revolution. Besides, agricultural revolution also was triggered by the improvement of transportation method such as roads, railroads, refrigerated railroad, cars and trucks. By using this improvement of transportation technology, the farmer could increase the quantity of crops yield being brought to the market hence maximize their profit. According to my professor, Deborah Symonds has stated “the changes in farming that made fortunes for some, and left others anxious and evicted from their farms.” Based on that statement, we can tell that there were possibility of pros and cons from the agricultural revolution phenomenon. However, I strongly believe that the pros outweigh the cons as the impact of agricultural revolution towards the society highly important. As we know, the development of science has created an improved quality of fertilizer that eventually impacted more productive land. As we know, productive land would produce vast productions of crops and animals.
This would lead to an even and stable population growth and contribution of food supplies, in which it became a key factor to the overcoming of famine problem. Apart from that, the increased of the population had produced a greater demand from the people for goods such as clothing. It is said that agricultural revolution had been the stepping stone to the Industrial Revolution. This has resulted in more construction of industrial factories hence increased the work opportunity for the people. On the other hand, the cons of agricultural revolution was that it included the reallocation of land ownership. When the land happened to be more productive, it increased in value. It attracted these capitalists to be investors for food plantation and domestic farmers to buy the land in a large scale so that they could utilize it to produce large crops and vast production of animals.
The consequence affected those small farm owners, or people who started with small area of land found themselves left out. It led to the eviction of small farming family from their own land for example the Highland Clearance in Scotland. In conclusion, Agricultural revolution had played a very significant role in shaping our modern day. I personally believe that we could not live as modern as it should be without agricultural revolution in fact I imagine that we could still go for hunting for food supplies just for the matter of survival. It made me think that this revolution has overcome world’s greatest problem, the deficient food and kept us away from famine. The Agricultural revolution was indeed a crucial phenomenon that ever happened in development of civilization.
In today’s world, there are an outrageous amount of meal options and food options. We are constantly looking for healthy foods so that we may live healthy lives. In regard to acquiring healthy foods, organic food is growing in popularity due to an increased concern for food security and ecological security. Organic food refers to crops or livestock that are grown on the farm without the application of artificial fertilizers, pesticides, or genetically modified organisms (Darveb and Katz 21).
There are a number of policies and particular requirements that must be satisfied and preserved for farmers to certify for organic food production. In order to acquire natural accreditation in the U. S., farmers must pay a fee to have their facilities and food each year inspected by certified natural inspectors.
For 3 successive years, the land and crops must not be treated with any artificial pesticides, insecticides, herbicides or particular fertilizers, such as sewage sludge and most chemical fertilizers (http://www. ams. usda. gov/AMSv1. 0/NOPFAQsHowCertified). Organic food is finest option because it is safer and much healthier than conventional food and ecologically tidy.
According to consumer studies, the general public is worried about the security of the fruit and vegetables purchased in shops due to the risk of pesticide contamination. Authors Marika Alena McCauley and Laura Inouye state, “Over 900 million pounds of pesticides are utilized annually by U. S. agriculture, posturing hazards to human health and wildlife. In addition, 24. 6 million pounds of antibiotics (70 percent of overall U. S. antibiotic production) are fed to chickens, pigs and cows each year.” Likewise, according to Consumers Union research study, 27 various foods had high toxicity levels and amongst 7 had an extremely high toxicity level.
The food with the highest toxicity levels were apples, grapes, green beans, peaches, pears, spinach and winter squash (“Environment: High Pesticide Levels Found in Produce. ” Facts On File World News Digest). These findings concern public health authorities that an antibiotic-resistant bacterium is infecting consumers. In contrast, organic foods exclude the use of synthetic chemicals and provide a variety of benefits. Certain studies show that organic foods have more beneficial nutrients, such as antioxidants, than their conventionally grown counterparts. Additionally, organic produce contains fewer pesticides which significantly benefits children, fetuses, and pregnant women.
At an early age, exposure to pesticides can cause developmental delays, behavioral disorders and motor dysfunction. Plus, pesticides can be passed from mother to child in womb, as well as through breast milk (http://www. helpguide. org/life/organic_foods_pesticides_gmo. htm). Moreover, organic food often tastes fresher because it does not contain preservatives, and it is typically grown locally so there is minimal time between the picking to the selling. Organic farming is also advantageous to the environment.
America’s industrial-style farms are the number one source of water pollution in the country and characteristically contaminate surface waters and municipal water supplies. Every year conventional farmers dump 1 billion pounds of pesticides and herbicides and 22 million tons of chemical fertilizers onto their crops, tapping any of the 9000 chemicals at their disposal (Harris, 74). Chemical intensive farms and long distance food transportation not only use up enormous amounts of non-renewable fossil fuel but also pollute the air and destroy the ozone layer.
Pesticides such as methyl bromide can generate up to 20-25% of climate disrupting greenhouse gases (Cummins, 17). On the other hand, organic farming practices reduce pollution (air, water, soil), conserve water, reduce soil erosion, increase soil fertility, and use less energy. Farming without pesticides is environmentally safer for birds and small animals as well as farmers. Organic farming also fights against the effects of global warming. According to the Rodale Institute, a nonprofit organic research institution, a healthy, organic agricultural system actually reduces carbon dioxide and slows climate change.
The institute reveals that if only 10,000 medium sized farms in the U.S. converted to organic production, they would reduce carbon storage in the soil in an amount comparable to taking 1,174,400 cars off the road or reducing car miles driven by 14. 62 billion miles.
Today, organic agriculture is practiced in almost every country in the world. Although many people primarily associate organic agriculture with fruits and vegetables, organic agricultural practices apply to crops such as grains, citrus, nuts, herbs, beans, and grass for pastureland. Because of the benefits of organic food, more hospitals have integrated organic food into staff and patient menus. According to the Organic.
Trade Associate, U. S. families are increasingly embracing organic products with 81% of U. S. families buying certain at least one type of organic product. As a result, sale of organic foods in the U. S. have increased by more than 20% every year since 1996, reaching $13. 8 billion 2005 and projected or reach $32 billion in 2009 (McCauley and Inouye, 86). Rodale Institute also found that organic systems are nearly three times as profitable as a chemically induced agricultural system. Organic systems see an average of $558. 00 in net returns per acre per year, versus $190 per acre per year for chemical systems.
There are much broader benefits to choosing organic food. The food protects your family from toxic pesticide residues commonly found on fruit and vegetable skins. Pesticides cause numerous health problems depending on the chemical makeup. Organic food also gives increased nutritional value when compared to conventional food. By going organic, consumers not only reap health benefits but also help improve biodiversity, producing less greenhouse gases, cleaner water sources, soil preservation and sustainability for future farming.
By choosing organic products, you are choosing to reduce environmental pollution and ensure that farming will be stable and sustainable for years to come.
WORKS CITED Cummins, Ronnie. “Industrial Farming Is Harming Farmers, the Environment, and Public Health. ” Is factory farming harming America? , Ed. Stuart A. Kallen. Farmington Hills: Christine Nasso, 2006. 11-19. Print. Derven, Daphne L. “Organic Agriculture. ” Encyclopedia of Food and Culture. Ed. Solomon H. Katz. Vol. 3. New York: Charles Scribner’s sons, 2003. 14-19. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 26 Feb. 2014. “Environment: High Pesticide Levels Found in Produce. ” Facts on File World News Digest: n. pag. World News Digest. Facts on File News Services, 25 Feb. 1999. Web. 26 Feb. 2014. ;http://www. 2facts. com/article/1999127620;.
Harris, Mark. “Organic FUTURES. ” Vegetarian Times 283 (2001): 74. Academic Search Complete. Web. 5 Mar. 2014. McCauley, Marika Alena, and Inouye, Laura. “Organic Farming Should Be Pursued. ” Food opposing viewpoints. Ed. Laura K. Egendorf. Farmington Hills: Bonnie Szumski, 2006. 85-88. Print. Non Profite Resource. “Organic Foods. ” Understanding Organic Food Labels, Benefits, and Claims. N. p. , Dec. 2013. Web. 04 Apr. 2014. United States Department. “Agricultural Marketing Service – Home. ” National Organic Program, 28 Jan. 2014. Web. 05 Apr. 2014.
Cattle dominate our food market today and our agriculture is becoming less sustainable. Agriculture is “the science, art, or practice of cultivating the soil, producing crops, and raising livestock and in varying degrees the preparation and marketing of the resulting products” (Merriam Webster). With technological advancements, farming techniques have changed and mass production is dominating our agriculture.
According to the Center for Agroecology Sustainable Food Systems, The US Congress defines a sustainable agriculture in commitment to include, “satisfy human food and fiber needs” and “enhance the quality of life for farmers and society as a whole” (CASFS). These techniques are not only harmful to cattle, but can also be harmful to people consuming them. Some techniques include feeding animals corn instead of natural food, hormones to make them grow faster, and antibiotics are being used to fight off bacteria due to these techniques.
Although these techniques have a very negative affect, food prices are an even bigger problem. Money is the determining factor for everything when it comes to agriculture. Every farming company’s goal is to make a profit, which drives farmers to use cheap techniques to mass-produce, creating a cheaper product for consumers. Due to supply and demand, cattle populations have increased but their life quality has not. There are not enough restrictions to protect these animals and something needs to be done.
A sustainable agriculture will result in a quality life for our animals and produce a healthier product; to do this we must educate people about food, create restrictions, and enforce these restrictions. The first step in creating a sustainable agriculture is educating people about the food they are consuming. The majority people are unaware of how our food is made and what it is made of. They are uneducated of the process foods go through and believe that, if a product is sold on the market, that it is safe to eat. Our government does a horrible job at educating about health risks in our food.
News media is the quickest way to inform people, but they are not informed until it is to late. An example of this is foodborne illness caused by beef. In 2011 the Center for Disease Control estimated that each year 48 million (or 1 in 6 people) get sick from foodborne illness in the United States. This resulted in 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths due to foodborne illness (CDC). One of the most popular foodborne illnesses is salmonella. The United States Department of Agriculture states that, “Salmonella is a gram-negative, rod-shaped bacilli that can cause diarrheal illness in humans.
They are microscopic living creatures A recent incident took place on July 22, 2012 when Cargill Meat Solutions recalled 29,339 pounds of fresh ground beef. The Center for Disease Control reported that 46 people in nine states were infected with salmonella linked to ground beef (CDC). People infected received antibiotics and no deaths were reported. These illnesses could have been prevented if people were more educated about the health risks of beef. Ground beef is a very popular food, and there is a high demand for it.
With high demand, more supply is needed, which leads to mass production. With mass production comes more bacteria and disease. Cattle and feedlots are a key example of this. Over the last 50 years cattle farming has changed dramatically. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) stated, ‘the size of the beef industry in the U. S. has declined gradually over the last 15 years. There were 1. 0 million beef cow operations in 1986, which had declined to 0. 83 million operations in 2000. The numbers of beef cows, however, have remained stable at about 33 million head” (EPA).
So with the demand of beef staying the same but the number of operations declining, only means that mass production is becoming more popular. Mass production, hormones, antibiotics, and overall living conditions are horrible for cattle. Cattle farmers over the years have become very dependent on hormone use. Not only cows now eating corn to plump up, they are also being fed growth hormones. Growth hormones allow cows to gain an extra 40 to 50 pounds of fat, costing farmers roughly $1. 50 per cow. These hormones cause all types of problems to their health.
Michael Pollan, a popular author decided to write an article on the life of cattle. To do this he purchased his own steer and observed the process they go through in their 14th month life span. He stated, ”In my grandfather’s day, steers were 4 or 5 years old at slaughter, in the 50’s, when my father was ranching, it was 2 or 3. Now we get there at 14 to 16 months” (Pollan). With cows growing roughly three years quicker, they are producing less natural lean meat, and antibiotics are being used to kill bacteria and illness. Some researchers have found
that these antibiotics still consist after meat is put on the shelf and humans are consuming it. Some researchers have thought that hormones and antibiotics in our food could be part of the reason why girls are maturing faster or why there are less sperm counts in men, but there is no evidence to prove that. As Pollan talks more about a steer’s lifestyle on the feedlot, more problems are introduced. Cattle have the worst living conditions out of any other animal. On a feedlot thousands of steer are lined up, standing shoulder to should in manure confined by fences.
Pollan described lagoons of animal waste that was so toxic that it couldn’t even be used as fertilizer. If people were educated and knew more about where their beef is coming from, there may be less of a demand for it. Besides education, our government needs to create more restrictions to create not only a healthier product, but let cattle live a natural life. The second step toward a more sustainable agriculture is creating restrictions for raising cattle. Creating restrictions would set guidelines for farmers and would reduce the amount of chemicals given.
Less chemical use would allow cattle to live a healthier normal life and produce lean, healthier meat ,reducing the chance of foodborne illness greatly. In 1980 Europe put a ban on all hormones fed to live stalk. The ban took place on suspicion “over the possible negative health effects of using hormones in livestock production, and contributed to a general climate in Europe that was suspicious of the use of hormones in livestock production and the potentially harmful health effects to consumers” (Congressional Research Service).
Studies have shown that in beef produced by cattle receiving hormones, hormones still exist in the food that sit on our shelves. Creating restrictions against hormone use would result in a healthier product for consumers. In order to create a healthier product, the living conditions of cattle need to improve as well. Mass production in feedlots became very popular when the government started telling farmers to expand. Expanding allowed farmers to hold as many cattle as possible, ignoring the health risks. Feedlots are farms for cattle where they are raised before getting slaughtered.
Cattle are divided into little pins with food surrounding them. There is no place for them to walk around to eat grass or get fresh water or even go to the bathroom. Because of this, cows end up standing shoulder-to-shoulder knee deep in waste. This is a big threat to the animals and the environment due to pollution. Cattle are treated unfairly, yet there are no laws in protecting them. Michigan State Animal Center stated, “There are not many laws that oversee the processes that people follow when they breed, raise, and ultimately slaughter cattle.
The laws that do exist typically do more to foster the industry than to protect the welfare of the cattle” (MSU). This allows farmers to get away with pretty much anything when raising their cattle. When trying to put laws on protecting cattle however, farmers speak out and get upset. In 2007 a bill was presented to “Gas Tax” cattle farmers for air and water pollution, costing each farmer roughly $30,00 a year. The bill was turned down because it would bankrupt farmers and ruin the livestock industry.
Farmers getting upset are part of the reason why little restrictions are set, but restrictions are useless when there is nobody enforcing them. Enforcing restrictions is the third step toward creating a sustainable environment. One of the biggest problems with enforcing restrictions is that our government supports cattle feedlots. Just like with corn, cattle farmers receive imbursements from the government. They allow this because the government receives income from taxes off beef. Just like cattle farmers, the government would rather create a cheap product to make profit.
As long as they are making money, no enforcements will take place, and farmers are able to slide past restrictions, overall creating an unhealthy product. However, when consumers get sick from a product, the blame game takes place. Beef goes through many different processes before it hits the shelves in stores. It is nearly impossible to track meat from when the cattle is born and raised to warehouses where the meat is processed. Once a problem is found in beef, a recall takes place, and it can take months to track where the problem came from, but by then it is to late.
The Natural Resource Defense Counsel states that feedlots escape regulations and “loopholes in the law and weak enforcement share the blame” (NRDC). Cattle farmers and processing plants point their fingers at each other and nothing is really done about the problem. It is very possible that foodborne illnesses can be picked up in the processing stage, but the life style and how cattle are being treated play a big factor as well. Some improvements have taken place, including the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act. This law states that animals taken to slaughter must be unloaded for food and water every 28 hours.
The law protects animals from inhumane slaughter, yet loopholes have been found. Undercover inspectors are placed in slaughterhouses to enforce these rules. They found out that animals were still being treated inhumanely by being slaughtered while conscious. Animal Law Coalition noted, “there was no effort made to stop the ineffective stunning and the records kept by inspectors were so poor” (ALC). This is another example of how farming companies get around restrictions and our government needs to do a better job in enforcing them creating an overall more sustainable agriculture.
A sustainable agriculture will result in a quality life for our animals and produce a healthier product; to do this we must educate people about food, create restrictions, and enforce these restrictions. Educating people will allow them to know the health risks of the foods they are putting in their bodies. Creating restrictions will force farmers to use fewer chemicals, creating less chance for foodborne illness and disease. Enforcing restrictions will allow cattle to have a more natural life over all, resulting in a healthier product for our consumers.
A sustainable food system is made up of environment, process and people by which farmers produce products that are processed and bought in the market without any harm to the ecosystem, natural resources and with long term environmental benefits. The food production method must be changed globally to reduce the effect on resources so that it does not become depreciated and support for food production in future. It is a major concern in the growing population in the world to ensure sustainable supply of food as it is one of the fundamental areas that lacks awareness today.
Usually developing country farmers are working to improve the sustainability of food production. Sustainable agriculture can help increase the yields. It helps improve food production and security in short term and long term. It helps ensure resources are available indefinitely, barring some abrupt circumstances. This means these nations can feed their populations and become self-sustaining. Like other inexpiable activities, food production adds to water shortage, climate change and soil deterioration. The degree of ecological effect of food production identifies with where and how the nourishment is delivered and the neighborhood accessibility of characteristic assets, for example, water and soil.
Farmers may likewise utilize reused wastewater, which may somehow or another have been disposed of, to help moderate this major resource. Doing so could likewise help improve sanitation on the board. The extension of horticulture has been perhaps the biggest effect on the earth. It has changed environments and is perhaps the best strain for biodiversity. With changes in precipitation designs, farmers face double dangers from flooding and dry season. The two boundaries can crush crops.
Flooding washes away rich topsoil that farmers rely upon for productivity, while desiccation dries it out, making it all the more effortlessly overwhelmed or washed. Higher temperatures increment harvests’ water needs, making them much increasingly defenseless during dry periods. Various types of weeds, creepy crawlies profit by higher temperatures and raised CO2, expanding their capability to harm crops and making budgetary hardship for ranchers. Moving atmospheres additionally imply that agrarian nuisances can grow to new zones where ranchers hadn’t recently managed them.
With higher temperatures, the vast majority of the world’s glacial masses have started to retreat; influencing farmers who rely upon cold tempered water for irrigation. Rising ocean levels, in the meantime, elevate flood perils for beach front homesteads, and increment saltwater interruption into seaside freshwater springsmaking those water sources unreasonably salty for irrigation. For using the natural resources productively, we should do the following: Decrease utilization of petroleum derivatives and improve water use in production.
Improve land utilization and lessen the change of land for horticulture. Plan vitality and water productive nourishment manufacture places. Sustainable practices:
The nourishment supply, especially as far as discharge of ozone depleting substances, has impacts at all phases of the ecosystem. On the other hand, the rural stage is the single biggest ozone depleting substances producer with meat and dairy items as the most ozone harming substances serious nourishments. Even so, the job of people and their utilization designs significantly affect the food management and its production and the populace allowance of faith based expectations and mentalities will address whether the long term maintainability of the food store network can be accomplished.
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