Whenever I am asked about my education and career, I receive almost same decade old comments because of the stereotype image of agriculture. Being a graduate level agriculture instructor, the situation gets more interesting when they ask is there any particular curricula for agricultural studies and what do you teach the students? This is the situation of the country I am residing in i.e. Pakistan, which is one of the biggest agricultural nations of the world with around 70 percent of the population involved directly or indirectly in farming activities and providing 45 percent of the labor force, still the importance of agriculture is not fully understood. And the situation is not different in many other parts of the world including developed countries as discuss with my professional links at various seminars and conferences.
Agriculture is always underestimated. The fresh entrants in agricultural degree programs are discouraged at every level, at least in Pakistan, again due to stereotype image of agriculture and glamour that is linked to medical and engineering profession. The reason of today’s blog is to encourage new entrants to adopt agriculture and current agricultural graduates to feel pride of being agriculturist by highlighting few lines on the importance of agriculture.
Technical Aspects of the Importance of Agriculture
In the world of today, the importance of agriculture has increased many folds when the population of the world has hit the 7 billion mark and exploding at an exponential rate. The need of a professional agriculturalist is increasing. The annual growth rate of world population is 1.11 percent in 2017 (worlometer) and following these trends, United Nations has projected that by 2050, the earth will be home of over 9.7 inhabitants. Feeding and supplying fiber to such a mammoth population is not an easy task. Before moving ahead, let me take your attention to the fact that, an agriculturist is a potential global employee, i.e. he/she has a chance to get a job anywhere in the world depending on the abilities, skills and importantly the attitude.
Moving further, the global community has harnessed almost everything what it could get from the famous “green revolution” of 1960’s. Innovation and smartness is the dire need of time to have sustainable food and fiber. Most importantly, the water resources are depleting, so is the organic matter in the soils. This situation demands rigorous research and for that, need of an agriculturist cannot be denied.
Social Aspects of the Importance of Agriculture
Being an agriculture student does not mean that you learn agriculture only. An agricultural graduate is equipped with wide range of knowledge. I am not undermining the importance of any other field of knowledge, but recall and think what you learnt in mathematics or social studies class is applicable to your daily life? Or how much information you learnt in chemistry class is used and helpful in your routine life today? However the knowledge gained in agriculture or its sub domains like horticulture, food technology, agricultural economics, entomology agricultural engineering etc. are not only helpful in daily life but open new and dynamic dimensions of nature in front of you. Agriculture studies also build leadership qualities because of its applied nature and work ethics along with the ability of work in harsh and pressure situations.
Last but not the least, being a normal human being and consumer, our 80 percent daily requirements is fulfilled by agriculture sector in one way or another. How? What we earn is spent largely on food and clothing. And ask yourself before you survey people around you; do you really bother where it comes from? What is its source? Is it safe to consume? What are the benefits of consuming a certain food type? The answer is definitely NO. Here comes the importance of agriculture. The knowledge of what are you consuming comes when you study agriculture.
Human nature is to fight challenges. Sometimes the challenges are self-created in the form of problems or are natural. Agriculture, being a tough job in the fields helps in learning skills to face the challenges. And once the challenge is fulfilled, the passion about the profession increases many folds. So, the importance of agriculture cannot be denied. The human race depends on it. If all farmers quit growing crops, what would happen? That is why; I believe that basic agricultural courses should be included at intermediate and college level.
Cite this Article in APA Style as:
[box type=”note” align=”aligncenter” ]Rahman, M. A. (2017, August 07). The Importance of Agriculture [Blog Post]. Retrieved from http://aridagriculture.com/2017/08/07/the-importance-of-agriculture/[/box]