JAC Board Class 10 Social Science Notes Geography Chapter 4 Agriculture
→ Two-thirds of the population of India are engaged in agricultural activities.
- Agriculture is a primary activity, which produces most of the food that we consume.
- It produces foodgrains and raw material for various industries.
- Few agricultural products like tea, coffee, spices, etc. are exported.
→ Types of Farming
- Cultivation methods have changed significantly depending upon the characteristics of physical environment, technological know-how and socio-cultural practices.
- The types of farming are primitive subsistence farming, intensive subsistence farming and commercial farming.
- Primitive subsistence agriculture is a ‘slash and bum’ agriculture. When the fertility decreases, the farmers shift and clear a fresh patch of land for cultivation.
- Practised on small patches of land, with primitive tools and family or community labourers. ‘This type of farming depends upon monsoon, natural fertility of the soil.
- Intensive subsistence farming is practised in the. are.as of high population pressure on land. It is a labour-intensive farming with high dose of biochemical inputs and irrigation to obtain higher production. The size of land holding is uneconomical but the farmers continue to take the maximum output from the limited land.
- Commercial farming involves the use of higher doses of modem inputs, like high yielding variety (HYV) seeds, chemical fertilisers, insecticides and pesticides in order to obtain higher productivity. The degree of commercialisation varies from one region to another. Plantation agriculture is a type of commercial farming where a single crop is grown on a large area. It has an interface of agriculture and industry.
→ Cropping Pattern
- The three cropping seasons of India are – rabi, kharif and zaid.
- Rabi crops are sown in winter from October to December and harvested in summer from April to June. Wheat, barley, peas, gram and mustard are some rabi crops. Wheat and other rabi crops are grown in Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh. Availability of precipitation from western temperate cyclone helps in the success of these crops. Green Revolution has been an important factor in the growth of the rabi crops in the states of Punjab, Haryana, western Uttar Pradesh and parts of Rajasthan.
- Kharif crops are grown with the onset of monsoon and harvested in September- October. Important crops are paddy, maize, jowar, bajra, tur, moong, urad, cotton, jute, groundnut and soyabean. Important rice growing states are Assam, West Bengal, coastal regions of Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra, Konkan coast, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.
- Zaid season is a short season between the rabi and kharif seasons. Some of the crops grown in this season are watermelon, muskmelon, cucumber, vegetables, sugarcane and fodder crops.
→ Major Crops:
- Major crops grown are rice, wheat, millets, pulse, tea, coffee, sugarcane, oil seeds, cotton and jute, etc.
- Rice is a staple crop of majority of people of India. India is the second largest producer of rice after China. It requires high temperature, high humidity and annual rainfall of above 100 cm. In areas of less rainfall, irrigation is required. It is grown in the plains of north and north-eastern India, coastal and deltaic regions. Development of dense canal irrigation and tube wells has enabled rice cultivation in areas of less rainfall.
- Wheat is the second most important cereal crop. It requires a cool growing season, bright surlshine at the time of ripening, and 50 to 75 cm of annual rainfall equally distributed over the growing season. There are two important wheat growing zones. Major wheat producing states are Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan and parts of Madhya Pradesh.
- Millets, also known as coarse grains, are of high nutritious value. Jowar, bajra and ragi are important millets grown in India.
- Maize is used both as food and fodder. It is a kharif crop. It grows in old alluvial soil. In some states it is grown as rabi crop. Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh are major maize producing states.
- Pulses: Iifdia is the largest producer as well as the consumer of pulses in the world. It is a major source of protein in vegetarian diet. Except for arhar, all pulses are leguminous crops and help restore soil fertility by fixing nitrogen. Therefore, they are grown in rotation with other crops. Major pulse producing states are Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Karnataka.
→ Food Crops other than Grains
- Sugarcane is a tropical as well as subtropical crop. It grows well in hot and humid climate, and annual rainfall between 75 cm and 100 cm. It can grow on variety of soil. It requires manual labour from sowing to harvesting. India is the second largest producer of sugarcane after Brazil. The main sugarcane producing states are Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Punjab and Haryana.
- Main oilseeds produced in India are groundnut, mustard, coconut, sesamum, soyabean, castor seeds, cotton seeds, linseed and sunflower seeds. Most of these are edible and used as cooking medium. Some of these are used as raw material in the production of soap, cosmetics and ointments.
- Tea is a plantation agriculture. It was introduced by the British in India and is a popular beverage. It grows in tropical and sub-tropical climates. It is a labour-intensive industry. Major tea producing states are Assam, hills of Daijeeling and Jalpaiguri districts, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
- Coffee is a plantation crop. The Arabica variety initially brought from Yemen is produced in the country. Its cultivation is confined to the Nilgiri in Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
- India is the second largest producer of fruits and vegetables after China. India produces tropical as well as temperate fruits. Variety of fruits and vegetables is grown all over the country.
→ Non-Food Crops:
- Rubber: It grows in tropical and sub-tropical areas. It requires moist and humid climate. It is an important industrial raw material. It mainly grows in Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Garo hills of Meghalaya and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
- Fibre crops: Cotton, jute, hemp and natural silk are fibre crops. Cotton, jute and hemp are grown on soil. Natural silk is obtained from cocoons of silkworms fed on mulberry leaves. Rearing of silkworms for the production of silk fibre is known as sericulture.
- India is the second largest producer of cotton after China. Cotton grows well in black soil of the Deccan plateau. Major cotton producing states are Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.
- Jute is known as the golden fibre. It grows well on the well-drained fertile soils in the flood plains where soils are renewed every year. It is grown in West Bengal, Bihar, Assam, Odisha and Meghalaya. It is used for making gunny bags, coir mats, ropes, yam, carpets and’artefacts. It is losing its market to synthetic fibres, especially the nylon because of its high cost.
→ Technological and Institutional Reforms
- Sustained uses of land without compatible techno-institutional changes have hindered the pace of agricultural development.
- Collectivisation, consolidation of land holdings, cooperation and abolition of zamindari, etc. were given priority to bring institutional reforms in the country after Independence.
- Reforms were introduced by the Government of India in the 1960s and 1970s to improve Indian agriculture.
- The Green Revolution, which was based on the use of package technology and the White Revolution (Operation Flood) were some of the strategies initiated to improve the lot of Indian -agriculture.
- However the development was in the selected areas only.
- Some important steps taken were provision for crop insurance against drought, flood, cyclone, fire, disease, establishment of Grameen banks, cooperative societies, etc.
- Kissan Credit Card (KCC) and Personal Accident Insurance Scheme (PAIS), Minimum Support Price, special weather bulletins, etc. for farmers were introduced by the Government of India.
- Bhoodan Gramdan or Bloodless Revolution by Vinoba Bhave was a successful movement.
→ Impact of Globalisation on Agriculture
- Though globalisation has been in India since the British rule and even before, it affected the farmers after 1990 when they found it difficult to compete with the developed countries because of the highly subsidised agriculture in those countries.
- Genetic engineering is recognised as a powerful supplement in inventing new hybrid varieties of seeds. Organic farming is in vogue and encouraged.
- There should be a change in cropping pattern from cereals to high-value crops to increase earning from agriculture as the economists feel the future of Indian farmers will be bleak, if they continue with foodgrain production on small landholdings.