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Food in the World

15 plants and 8
animals supply 90% of
our food
66% of people eat
mainly rice, wheat,
and corn (grains)
The top third of the
economic chain eats
primarily meat. drought_0

World Food Problems

Reasons for
Population growth
Degradation and
loss of cropland
Little growth in
Decline in global
fertilizer finiteresource

insufficient food to
meet ones
minimum daily
requirement for a
long enough time
to cause harmful
effects index_pow.htm

Malnutrition-Faulty nutrition. Caused
by a diet that does not supply a
persons with enough protein,
essential fats, vitamins, minerals,
and other nutrients.

excessive intake of
food, especially
fats chapter05/chapte

Impacts of Overgrazing
Land Degradation
Overgrazing removes the vegetal cover
over the soil
Roots cannot go deep into the soil
Adequate soil moisture is not available
Thus overgrazing leads to multiple actions
resulting in loss of soil structure, hydraulic
conductivity and soil fertility

Loss of useful species

Overgrazing adversely affects the
composition of plant population and
their regeneration capacity
The original grassland consists of
good quality grasses with high
nutritive value
Replacement by secondary species

Types of Food Production

Industrialized agriculture
Traditional agriculture farming.htm

Industrialized Agriculture

large amounts of
fossil fuel energy,
water, commercial
fertilizers and
pesticides to
produce huge
quantities of single foc_2003080

Traditional Agriculture porkchopsplace/

Traditional agriculture-practiced by 2.7

people on earth
Traditonal subsistence agriculture-produce
enough food to stay alive
Traditional Intensive agriculture-farmers
increase inputs of human and draft labor,
fertilizer and water to get a higher yield
per area of cultivated land to produce
enough food for families, and their income

Green Revolution
Involves 3 steps
1. Developing and planting
monocultures of selectively bred or
genetically engingeered high yeid
varieties of key crops
2. Lavishing fertilizer, pesticides, and
water on crops to produce high yeilds
3. Often increasing the intensity and
frequency of cropping

Traditional Agriculture and its

It usually involves a small plot, simple
tools, naturally available water, organic
fertilizers and a mix of crops
Low production
Soil Erosion
Depletion of Nutrients

Modern Agriculture and its Impacts

It makes use of hybrid seeds of selected single
crop variety, high-tech equipments and lots of
energy subsidies in the form of fertilizers,
pesticides and irrigation water
The Impacts
Fertilizer related problems
Pesticide related problems
Water logging
Salinity problems


Micronutrient Imbalance
Most of the chemical fertilizers used in modern
agriculture have nitrogen, phosphorus and
potassium which are essential macronutrients
Farmers use these indiscriminately to boost up
crop growth.
Nitrate Pollution
contaminate the ground water

Pesticide related problems

Creating resistance in pests and producing new pests
Some individuals of the pest species usually survive even
after pesticide spray
The survivors give rise to highly resistant generations
Death of non-target organisms
Many insecticides are broad spectrum poisons
Many of the pesticides are not biodegradable and keep on
accumulating in the food chain, this process is called as

Water logging
Over irrigation of croplands
Preventing excessive irrigation, sub-surface drainage
technology and bio-drainage with trees like Eucalyptus are
some of the remedial measures to prevent water logging.

Salinity Problems
Saline soils are characterized by the accumulation of
soluble salts like sodium chloride, sodium sulphate,
calcium chloride, magnesium chloride
The most common method for getting rid of salts is to flush
them out by applying more good quality water to such

Land Resources
In India per capita land availability for
agriculture land has declined from 0.48 ha in 1951
to 0.14 ha in 2001
More than 40% of the farmers in India were found
to be reporting poor yields not due to substandard seeds, irrigation problems etc. but due to
degrading land quality

It is estimated that 5 million tonnes of topsoil is

eroded every year and 20 % of such land is so
damaged that it is categorized as wasteland

Land Resources
Status of our land
23% of usable land
Agricultural mismanagement
Soil erosion
Disturbed natural cycles

Land Resources
Other problems
Water logging
Soil salinity
In Egypt 90%farms affected by
In Pakistan 66% irrigated land salinized
In India 12-25%