Importance of Agriculture to the employment and development of a Nation

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Introduction

Agriculture has often been referred to as the backbone to the economy of any nation. It forms a fundamental percentage of a nation’s income and is therefore significant as shall be discussed herein. Agriculture is the art of soil cultivation, animal rearing with varying degrees. Community gardening on the other hand refers to the plots that farming is done on a piece of land by a collective group of people.  Community gardening uses individual or shared pieces on private or public land to do their farming activities. In this respect, community plots entail the production of fruit, vegetables or other plants that may be grown for attractive purposes. Needless to say, community gardens are owned by the public, Non-Profit making organizations, or the local governments. They vary from one place to the other across the globe. Community gardens that are owned by nonprofit associations offer support to the less fortunate families, children from poor backgrounds, and youth groups as well as community based organizations. Such community gardens owned by non-profit making associations help the groups in developing and growing their own groups. In urban centers, community gardens function as market gardens. Those owning the plots on these community gardens practice crop rotation to enhance the soil fertility (Adelaide S. Aust.) & South Australia 89).

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Community gardens are important to the urban communities because they are used to assist in the provision of food within the urban areas. They alleviate the food desert effect in most urban centers. Most people living in urban centers have limited access to fresh farm produce like vegetables and fruits. However, with community gardening, these people are able to access the fresh farm produce. Low-income communities rely on food deserts for the supply of food. Because of their nature in terms of income, they consume much of processed food which they get from the urban stores, gas centers, and fast food moving restaurants. Studies suggest that community gardening helps in the alleviation of the desert effect that is known to cause the global decline in agricultural output. In addition, the absence of community gardening makes the fresh produce extremely costly which means that most of the people cannot afford it. With the fresh produce from the gardens, the people are able to have access to better foods that keep their health well. The vegetables and fresh fruits from the community gardens are known to enhance the health of the urban population. It is thus important for all the stakeholders in the agricultural sector and the private sector to promote the practice of community gardening. This is because it will help alleviate most of the problems facing humanity like poor health, poverty, and the desert effect (Raskin 76).

Arguably, human civilization finds its genesis from agriculture. The great ancestors used to grow crops in their temporary homesteads; this marked the change in the entire agriculture industry.  From history, the connection of the society to the land was of an intimate type. People should not therefore ignore the role of agriculture in society. However, in recent times, many urban areas have forgotten this fundamental connection of agriculture. The technology inventions, the improvement in the transport sector, the improved storage facilities all have contributed to the flourishing of this sector. There has been gradual growth and development in agriculture from time immemorial to recent times across the world. The role of community gardening and Agriculture is thus important (Hodgson, Campbell, & Bailkey 69).

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Journals, community organizations, government publications, and government admins are significant in agricultural activities. Therefore, all the youths and the private sector in every economy are expected to be more concerned with agriculture. The agriculture sector is thus relevant in the economy of every nation. Here, the focus shall be on the importance of practicing agriculture and community gardening to the society, government institutions, and community based organization, youth groups, among other stakeholders in the economy (Tracey 87).

The role of community gardening and agriculture to several sectors of the economy is very important. Intensified techniques in agriculture significantly help in the creation of employment to many jobless youths who think white collar jobs are the way. The importance of community based organizations in promoting agriculture in the communities and the related benefits cannot be ignored. In addition, the role of every sector in promoting the agricultural sector in several ways on meeting the diverse agricultural needs in relation to the role played by community gardening and the agriculturalist in rural areas is vital (Kanopy (Firm) 19).

Research in agriculture is important because it provides insights on other issues related to the growth of the economy. The integral role played by agriculture in the economy of any country in general cannot be taken for granted. Research on agricultural based activities opens the minds of the youth who perceive that agriculture is dirty work and thus seeks white color jobs in urban areas. It triggers the role played by the government in boosting the agricultural sector and in particular supporting the youth groups and the community based organizations. The research in agriculture endeavors to give an elaborate and ideal situation of why the private sector ought to be involved in farming because the two sectors are correlated.

There has been a lot of other related research in this field. However, they are not sufficient, as they are not all inclusive. Most government journals have the information on agriculture but are not elaborate and adequate. There is a need for people to use reliable published journals to compile the insights in them and improve their ways of farming. The use of established websites and government publications as a source of farming information is thus important. Lastly, individual or private insights on how people think of agricultural sector ought to operate (Lowry 82).

The researches that have been conducted by different researchers, have evidenced that most urban area residents are trying to practice community garden farming. There is also a significant number of individuals in the rural areas doing agriculture. In addition to this, support is received from the government to encourage farmers to venture in farming as their profession. Sadly, however, most youths despise farming; as a result, they prefer working in offices than in the farm (Ly 42).

Agriculture is important to all other sectors in the economy. People ought to be encouraged to practice agriculture with passion to promote other sectors. Agriculture can form the major income earner of a country’s revenue. Agriculture, though not liked by many people, could significantly help the growth of the economy. There should be sensitization on how the sectors in the economy should be integrated to work together. Food security is important to any nation since for any person to work properly; there should be adequate food for them. Technology ought to be integrated in farming techniques to aid in food production. Those in agriculture and those doing community gardening should diversify the farming to increase food production for the growing population in any nation. All the stakeholders in the agriculture sector ought to work together, exchange ideas on how to improve the food supply, how to find markets for their farm produce and how to integrate farming techniques to increase the yield. It is important for the government to provide subsidies and other incentives to encourage farmers to produce much food (Raskin 76).

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Agriculture contributes to the national income to most of the developing and developed countries. Research findings from most journals and websites propose that the prosperity in agriculture contributes to economic advancement. Most of the industrialized countries across the globe were once agricultural based countries. It is thus noted that most developing countries are predominantly agricultural based.  For instance in the Indian economy, agriculture contributes to about 28% of the countries national income (Thornton 17). Practicing agriculture is important because it aids in phasing out economic depression. In situations of economic depression facing a certain nation, the production in all other sectors can be reduced or mitigated but agriculture exempted because it produces food, which is a basic need of people. For this reason, agriculture can be the best alternative in adverse economic situations.

Agriculture can be a source of foreign exchange.  Primary exporters of agricultural raw products are developing countries. The export earnings from these nations contribute to a range of 60-70% of their national income. For this reason, the quantity of agricultural input machinery will solely depend on the foreign earnings of a nation from agriculture. In the scenario where the export of these agricultural products fails, the countries experience a number of deficit problems in relation to balance of payments. The deficiency in balance of payment problems leads to adverse foreign exchange problems. The findings also proposed that the earnings from the raw products are minimal. Therefore, countries exporting raw products ought to venture in manufacturing and processing of these agricultural products so that they can increase their foreign earnings (Thornton 19).

Agriculture improves the infrastructure of the economy. The development of agricultural sectors helps in promotion of the country’s infrastructure. Generally, the development of infrastructure is solely the role of the government. Therefore, with improved agricultural activity that earns the country good foreign returns will automatically be implied in the infrastructural development. With increased agricultural activities, there is employment creation. Recently there have been research findings that most youths are developing interest in agriculture. Agriculture can create jobs for youths who are skilled and unskilled. Agriculture is the alternate sector to the white collar jobs, which most youths perceive as their favorite. Youths can work hand in hand with the government and other stakeholders of the sector by employing their learnt skills in the agricultural field. Youths ought to change their attitude in the desire to work in offices and think of agriculture because the statistics finding suggests that the sector will be producing billionaire (Thornton 38).

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The government should take up professional courses related to agriculture. Such courses may entail agribusiness courses, which enables the learners to identify ideal enterprises that can be used to generate income as well as provide food security to both the rural and urban communities. The scholars ought to be encouraged to take up courses like agronomy; this will help them in discerning crop diseases and controlling them. They should also take up courses like animal husbandry to give them a wide knowledge on how to handle farm animals (Thornton 39).

Community gardening and agriculture is important to the community and others because it leads to improved rural welfare. With the development in the agricultural sector that is predominantly practiced in the rural areas, the people in the rural areas get jobs and thus improve their living standards and welfare. It leads to creation of effective demand in the economy. With immense growth in the sector, there will be increased purchasing power from the people working in the sector. This will replicate its effects in the growth of other economies that are non-agricultural based. The development in agriculture will tend to increase the market as a result of the expanded market. In most underdeveloped nations, they solely rely on agricultural products. Therefore, they will be forced to consume all the products produced from the agricultural sector (Thornton 29).

There is inequality reduction in most developing and underdeveloped countries. These countries are known to be predominantly doing agriculture and are densely populated. There is a big inequality between the people living in rural areas and those in urban areas. In such countries, agriculture ought to be promoted to increase the production in the sector, create more jobs for the rural people and improve their welfare to merit those in urban areas. Agriculture is the basic source of food supply. The only sector known to be producing and providing food to other sectors is agriculture. Most of the countries have a serious growing population majorly in the underdeveloped countries and developing countries. To meet this highly growing populations, there is need to increase the food supply in the agricultural sector (Thornton 35). Agriculture acts as a source of raw materials to other sectors. Other sectors solely rely on the agricultural sector for the supply of raw materials that are used in the production of other products. Research findings propose that the reduction in agricultural production has its effect on the products pricing.

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Conclusion and Recommendations

Agriculture and community gardening have been discussed above. Arguably, the youth ought to change their mentality on how they perceive agriculture. They should help the sector by applying their skills and time in Agriculture to improve production. Similarly, all other sectors should collaborate and promote agriculture because it is their backbone sector (Thornton 39).  Lastly, the countries exporting raw agricultural produce should change and export finished goods, as this will increase the returns. A lot of significant changes should be incorporated for Agriculture to make the impact that it ought to make in the economy of a nation.

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  1. Community and Neighborhood Houses and Centers Association (Adelaide, S. Aust.), & South Australia. (2010). Advocating for community gardening.
  2. Hodgson, K., Campbell, M. C., & Bailkey, M. (2011). Urban agriculture: Growing healthy, sustainable places.
  3. Kanopy (Firm). (2016). Gardening with Soul.
  4. Lowry, J. L. (2007). Gardening with a Wild Heart: Restoring California’s Native Landscapes at Home. Berkeley: University of California Press.
  5. Ly, L. (2015). The CSA cookbook: No-waste recipes for cooking your way through a community supported agriculture box, farmers’ market, or backyard bounty.
  6. Raskin, B. (2017). The community gardening handbook: The guide to organizing, planning, and caring for a community garden.
  7. Thornton, A. C. (2012). Urban agriculture in South Africa: A study of the Eastern Cape Province.
  8. Tracey, D. (2011). Urban agriculture: Ideas and designs for the new food revolution. Gabriola Island, BC: New Society Publishers.
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