Commercial Arable Farming

Topics: Agriculture, Farm, Harvest Pages: 5 (1425 words) Published: January 24, 2013
Breeders keep bringing out new varieties that are more productive than their predecessors. This is achieved in several areas, better resistance to disease, better standing power (we do not want crops flat on the ground at harvest time) greater tonnage with better quality characteristics. The future is genetic modification (GM) assuming this is put in place with the appropriate level of environmental sensitivity and consequential research. The simple fact is that if it can be made to work we will be able to design plants that will no longer need spraying. These plants will be specifically designed to withstand the diseases and predators in the environment in which they are grown. The only sprays required will be roundup (which biodegrades naturally within ten days) to control all weeds growing in the crop and an herbicide that kills the volunteer crop after harvest. We are talking of an organic utopia. No wonder the Organic lobbies having invested in there so called conversion are so opposed to cheap organic food for all. We are talking vested interests, no moral high ground here. The other major plus of GM is the potential to design crops for the specific purpose of industrial end use such as medicines plastics and oil. The benefit other than renew ability of these organic products would be to take significant arable acres away from growing food. The result might be to see slightly more expensive food, good for this vested interest!

Commercial agriculture contains six key factors:
1. Location
Commercial farms must move their products to market. Farms need to be located near transportation systems. Trucks, ships, planes, and trains are several ways that products can be moved from where they are grown or made to where customers can buy them. 2. Climate

A farm's soil, as well as the climate of the region in which it is located, determine what crops will grow there or whether the land can support livestock. The temperature and rainfall can also determine the type of crop grown. For example, oranges must be grown in a hot climate. They will not grow if the temperature is too cold. 3. Raw Materials

A commercial farm depends on raw material. For example, a farmer will plant grain to get wheat. A farmer will have dairy cows to produce milk. Seeds and animals are two examples of raw materials used in commercial agriculture. 4. Market Forces

Supply and demand are important for selling agricultural products. If there is a high deman for a product and low supply, the price will be increased. 5. Labour
People who work on farms provide different types of labour. Labour is needed to plant crops, as well as to harvest them. This is important because some produce, such as grapes, need to be hand harvested. 6. Transportation

Movement of agricultural products to market depends on transportation systems. For example, produce is shipped by rail in special refrigerated cars, then shipped across the ocean. Some crops such as fruit, must get to the market quickly, or else they will rot; crops like these are often shipped shorter distances or are sold in the regions where they are grown.

Physical Factors
There are a number of physical factors that makes arable farming in this area Relief- the land is very flat and is mostly 100m above sea level this makes it easy to use machinery and roads and railways have easily been constructed.  Soils – mostly fertile boulder clays that were laid down during the last ice age are good for growing cereals, sugar beet and potatoes.  Loam soils are good for growing vegetables, fruit and cereals and retain the plant foods and moisture.  Waterlogged soils are good for grazing cattle for dairying and the infertile soils in this region such as Breckland can be planted with trees such as pine which can be harvested. Climate -  The area tends to be in the rain shadow and rainfall is mostly in the region of 500-700mm per year.  There are long warm summers with average temperatures of 17...
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