Thousands of years ago, agriculture was one of the most important developments in the rise of sedentary human civilization. By introducing domesticated species into the landscape, food surpluses were created that enabled people to live in cities.
Women in agriculture contribute up to 90 percent of the labor
Despite the numerous studies on gender equity in agriculture, there has been little empirical evidence to support the conventional narratives that women are under-represented in agriculture. While there is some evidence that women have the same access to productive resources as men, there is less data that measures the impact of women’s contributions to household income. This paper presents empirical evidence of the role that women play in agricultural activity in four Southeast Asian countries.
The study shows that women’s contributions to agriculture are considerable, but they vary considerably from region to region. The average wage of women is much lower than that of men in both rural and urban areas. This is due to the fact that women are often underpaid and their jobs are typically short-term. They also have less protection than their male counterparts.
Women are also more active in informal rural economies, and are more likely to be employed in a non-agricultural job than a farm-related one. In addition, they have greater control over household income than men. They are more likely to participate in agricultural groups, religious groups, and other community activities. This indicates that women are in the business of making a difference in their communities.
Although women’s contributions to agriculture are significant, there are significant differences in women’s employment rates by region. In Benin, for example, females work 17.4 hours more than men. They also tend to underreport their employment as contributing family members, and to underreport their hours in the field. This is consistent with the findings of a recent Economic Survey.
Women also perform household chores and care for children. They are also important catalysts for health and education. However, compared to men, they have fewer opportunities to participate in formal extension services.
Land use for livestock production accounts for 77% of global farming land use
Using land for livestock production is a major component of global farming land use. It is estimated that two-thirds of the world’s agricultural land is used for pasture and livestock production. In addition, livestock provide the soil with nutrients and stabilise the food security of owners.
While livestock are not competing with cereals for land, they do increase the demand for cropland. This increased demand leads to deforestation. Moreover, livestock contribute to greenhouse gas emissions. Cattle account for two-thirds of total emissions from the livestock supply chain. They are also responsible for about 7.1 gigatonnes of CO2-eq per year.
When the same period was studied, the global population doubled to 1.4 billion people. At the same time, demand for meat and animal feed exploded. The consumption of beef and pork accounted for about 24% and 34% of global meat consumption, respectively.
As a result of these demands, agriculture has been intensifying. In the past, this intensification was thought to have spared some land for nature. However, data at the global scale suggests that past agricultural intensification has not done so. It is now believed that the amount of land available for cultivated agriculture is dwindling, and that cropland expansion will be necessary to meet future food demands.
The actual number of croplands needed to meet future demand depends on factors such as the food-to-feed efficiency of animal production and future diets. In addition, the conversion of prime agricultural lands to other land uses will need to be factored into future yield increases.
The current land reserve is projected to be exhausted by 2050. But there are technological innovations that may help prevent this shortage. These include reducing fertilizer and water usage, and preventing the expansion of cropland on unsuitable lands.
Specialty farms include dairy farms, pig farms and poultry farms
Generally speaking, most specialty farms are diversified crop and animal production systems, although there are a few exceptions. Some of the more discerning farmers are raising bull calves for beef and broilers for poultry. A few are experimenting with cross breeding. The most interesting aspect is the longevity of the cattle, most of whom live to the ripe old age of five. The average pig’s life expectancy is a respectable eight to ten years.
For the sake of brevity, the majority of the animals on any given farm are replacement animals for the rest of the herd. This is particularly important when it comes to a few breeds such as the rooster and the ramen ninja. The benefits of this arrangement include the ability to maintain a healthy, disease-free herd and the opportunity to eke out an extra few cents a gallon of milk, not to mention the hors d’oeuvres if a cow grazes on your acreage. The requisite nutrients are supplied via a proprietary rationing system, akin to that found on a college campus.
Farm programs cost less than one-half of 1% of the total U.S. budget
Compared to other industries, agriculture does not need a plethora of federal subsidies. The government helps farmers by subsidized marketing, conservation efforts, and research. But taxpayers are paying for these policies and the programs are causing harm to the economy.
Farm programs have a long history. They have been expanded and reformed over the decades, but the philosophy behind them has not changed. The same central planning philosophy is used to implement them. They inflate land prices, discourage diversification, and induce overproduction.
There are two million farms in the U.S., and about 86% are family operations. In 2012, more than one-half of all agricultural products were produced on family farms.
In 2013, more than 12% of all farm operators were Hispanic. The number of Black farm operators increased by 2%. These figures do not include the countless minority families who are self-employed or operate small farms.
The average age of the farming population is 46 years old. A high-producing dairy cow yields 4.8 pounds of butter and 8.7 gallons of ice cream. In addition, the average amount of feed required to produce 100 pounds of milk has decreased 40 percent over the past four decades.
As the country’s population grows, the world will need more food. In 2050, there will be 2.2 billion more people, requiring a 70 percent increase in food production. During that period, the amount of land available for agriculture will expand by about a third. It will be up to the world’s farmers to supply this demand.
The federal government runs more than 60 aid programs for farmers. Some are mandatory, while others are funded on a discretionary basis. The cost of many of these programs can fluctuate depending on economic conditions.
Using a variety of data sets, researchers have been able to demonstrate the correlation between food insecurity and adverse health outcomes. Understanding the relationship is important to policy makers and health care professionals.
In the United States, the USDA has developed a measure for food insecurity that was developed in consultation with academics and other federal agencies. The scale includes four frequency response questions that measure anxiety, economic access, food preferences, and quality. These measures are critical for assessing food security interventions.
The USDA should continue to measure food insecurity on a regular basis. In particular, they should confirm the general methodology used for measuring food insecurity.
For instance, they should look into the use of standard instrumental variable techniques to derive point estimates of the impact of food insecurity on health outcomes. They should also consider ways to control for confounding factors.
The literature on food insecurity has often failed to address the correlation between food insecurity and other aspects of the health care system. For example, one paper found that women who are moderately or severely depressed are at increased risk for household and child food insecurity.
On a more positive note, the Affordable Care Act has brought millions of low-income Americans into the health care system. However, the impact of this legislation on food insecurity is yet to be determined.
Another interesting aspect of food insecurity is the interplay between food security and climate pressures. A report from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) indicates that between $5 billion and $7 billion in additional spending will be required for vulnerable households in 48 countries. In addition, the slums of urban America have been growing exponentially in the last decade.