The main focus of agricultural industry lies on challenges faced by crop producers in the area of marketing support, sustainable cultural practices, integrated pest management, environmental and human health risks, regulations and profitability.
There are differenttypes of agricultural production system depending on thetypeof crop and use. Thetypesof feed or row crop grown by farmers depends on the traditional, organic or conventional management systems available. Crop Production and management ofcorn, cotton,wheat, soybeanand tobacco cropsgenerates profit to the farmers. Crop productionalso includes feed sources and resource inputs used to produce crops required to maintain the dairy herd and contribute to the meat industry.Feeds grown include corn grain or silage; alfalfa hay and silage; soybean and soybean meal; oats; wheat; distiller’s grains solids. Animals maintained by farmers are provided with dietary supplements or minerals and grass or hay for forage. Resource inputs incrop productioninclude equipments or machinery, fuel for tractors, pesticides, fertilizers and packaging materials.
Types of system
There are several hybrid crop production systems arising due to availability of certain natural resources and other factors.
Some of food crop production practices include mixed, subsistence, plantation farming and others. Mixed farming is an agricultural system practised on the same piece of land by farmers to cultivate crops and raise animals simultaneously. Different crops with different maturity periods are grown continuously throughout the season at same time using best practiceswith good rainfall or irrigation facilities. Subsistence farming allows farmer to produce food with simple farm tools on small land holding. The farmers in this system are perceived poor that do not use electricity and irrigation system, fertilisers, pesticides or improved seeds;reducing the productivity.
Plantation farming or tree crop farming is an agricultural farming system for farmers of single crop like cocoa, tea, coffee, rubber, spices or fruits like apples, avocado, grapes, oranges, mangoes, etc grown on commercial basis on a large piece of land. The system requires good management and technical skills with a substantial amount of capital investment for machines, fertilizers and other facilities. In shifting cultivation system, farmers clear a piece of forest land by cuttingand burning the residues of vegetation to grow crops for three to five years. The farmer abandons the land for a fallow period on loss of fertility and moves to a new fertile land to cultivate. The process is repeated and former lands are cultivated after years on regaining fertility. Arable system of farming is practiced in a small scale or commercial scale to grow only annual crops like cassava, plantain, vegetables, grains and legumes without mixed or pastoral farming.
The most common types of feed production involve nomadic and pastoral farming. Pastoral or Livestock farming avoid crops and aim at producing only livestock for dairyfarming, raising beef cattle or sheep for wool. Farmers use available feed resources on established pasture lands to feed the livestock without moving around like in nomadic farming. This system is expensive and not sustainable when excessive grazing destroys the natural fields forcing farmers to buy feed for the herd. Agricultural farming system of nomadic farming is similar to pastoral farming but herdsmen move animals like cattle, goats, sheep, horses, camel or donkeys in search of water and suitable grazing fields.
Online Course at JLI
James Lind Institute (JLI) will soon be launching Agriculture related courses to understand on modern agricultural practices.
For more information please visit: www.jliedu.com