Agriculture has evolved and there have been a lot of techniques introduced just to achieve one aim, which is to scale in productivity and meet up with the increasing demand of food all over the world.
The modern agricultural revolution caused yields of primary crops such as wheat and rice increased dramatically, the price of food declined, the zero hunger agenda is becoming visible daily.
Today these various modern agricultural systems such as development of new crop varieties, the use of pesticides and fertilizers, and the construction of large irrigation systems.
What are the best modern agricultural practices?
The goal of modern agricultural system is developed with two major goals in view; to get the economic profit possible and obtain the highest yields possible.
Below are the six basic practices that form the backbone of production;
- Genetic manipulation of crop plants
- Chemical pest control
- Application of inorganic fertilizer
- Intensive tillage
The above practices is used for its individual contribution to productivity, but when they are all combined in a farming system each depends on the others and reinforces the need for using the others. These practices would not have been possible without the help of an agronomists, specialist in agriculture.
Farmers have been choosing among crop plants and animals for specific characteristics for thousands of years. But lately modern agricultural system has taken advantage of several more recent crop breeding techniques. The development of hybrid seeds, where two strains of crops are combined to produce a more productive offspring, has been one of the most significant strategies.
Chemical Pest Control:
In the large monoculture fields of much of modern agriculture, pests include such organisms as insects that eat plants, weeds that interfere with crop growth, and diseases that slow plant and animal development or even cause death. When used properly, synthetic chemicals have provided an effective, relatively easy way to provide such control. Chemical sprays can quickly respond to pest outbreaks.
Application of Inorganic fertilizer:
Very dramatic yield increases occur with the application of synthetic chemical fertilizers. Relatively easy to manufacture or mine, to transport, and to apply, fertilizer use has increased from five to ten times what it was at the end of World War II (1939-45). Applied in either liquid or granular form, fertilizer can supply crops with readily available and uniform amounts of several essential plant nutrients.
By supplying water to crops during times of dry weather or in places of the world where natural rainfall is not sufficient for growing most crops, irrigation has greatly boosted the food supply. Drawing water from underground wells, building reservoirs and distribution canals, and diverting rivers have improved yields and increased the area of available farm land. Special sprinklers, pumps, and drip systems have greatly improved the efficiency of water application as well.
The soil is cultivated deeply, completely, and regularly in most modern agricultural systems, and a vast array of tractors and farm implements have been developed to facilitate this practice. The soil is loosened, water drains better, roots grow faster, and seeds can be planted more easily. Cultivation is also used to control weeds and work dead plant matter into the soil.
When one crop is grown alone in a field, it is called a monoculture. Monoculture makes it easier to cultivate, sow seed, control weeds, and harvest, as well as expand the size of the farm operation and improve aspects of profitability and cost. At the same time, monocultures tend to promote the use of the other five basic practices of modern agriculture.
If we can sustain or improve on these modern agricultural systems, the entire world will become a farm village. Check out how www.farmcenta.com is contributing to the digitalization of farming in Nigeria.