Foraging to Farming
“A farmer is always going to be rich next year “. – Philemon
Take a long deep breath and start thinking of our ancestors, how our grandparents lived their lives and how we are living our life. Change is an integral part of our life. If you ask your grandparents how they got their food, they might have a different answer than you think. Why is this? It’s because agriculture has changed throughout history. How people gave up hunting and gathering to become agriculturists and how that change has influenced the world we live in today.
During their early history, humans survived as foragers or hunter-gatherers. They hunted wild animals and gathered wild fruits and roots. That’s why man lived in constant migration in search of food but the revolution was about to start which would forever change this all way of life.
The revolution happened with the mastery of agricultural techniques. Man learned how to soil the land and reap the fruit of his work. This new habit allows man to gradually settle down Agriculture Where When Why on his pieces of land leaving his nomadic life behind.
Settlement and domestication
The first village began to emerge on the foot planes of the river as these were the most fertile land. The early foragers are knowledgeable on which plants are edible and which are poisonous. Their diet consisted of 2300 calories a day. This revolution began 12,000 years ago in several areas of the world. According to research, it was first started in the Middle East, an area known as the ‘fertile crescent’ of Mesopotamia. These include the countries of Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and Israel. The man began to give the preference to the cultivation of cereals, besides their nutritional value, could be stored for a longer period of time. However, some of the cereals often attack by pests rodents.
During that same historical period, man developed the ability to domesticate animals as well (goats, sheep, and dogs). The dog was the first animal to be domesticated. It would be used as a working animal, helping to safeguard and livestock activities. These animals were domesticated in order to provide food and other many domestic products. These small villages started to produce surpluses traveling and exchanging their product with other villagers. Commerce began to slowly emerge.
The Neolithic period
The Neolithic Period is part of the late Stone Age. During the Neolithic Period, people used stone tools, domesticated plants, and animals, and lived in villages. Farmers lived in caves, sun-baked mud houses, of reed or wooden houses. House grouped into small villages with surrounding fields.
Agriculture and Trade
The growth of cities was stimulated by the production of surplus crops. Mixed farming, combining the cultivation of crops and stock raising was a common Neolithic pattern. Metals were introduced during the Roman period. Moreover trade in agriculture started during this period (Trade in wine and olive oil, Rye and oats, cotton spun and imp. source of sugar). Rome started as a rural agriculture society. Feudal agriculture began soon after the fall of the Roman Empire.
The majority of people were peasants who did all the hard work. They lived in small, cramped huts and had to do all the hard work on the farmland, and were given small strips of land that they could farm for themselves. They earned just enough to survive. By the 16th century, population and agriculture were expanding in Europe. There was colonial agriculture. Colonial agriculture produced cash crops and feed the home country. Cultivation of sugar, cotton, tobacco, tea animal for wool and hide occurred during this period.
Abolishment of slavery and scientific revolution
From the 15th to 19th centuries slaves were used in plantations. Indians enslaved in Mexico, Slaves from England’s prison provided skilled to work in the field. Slavery and selfdom wiped out in the 19th century.
The scientific revolution occurred from the Renaissance and Age of Enlightenment in Europe. It was like plant breeding, breeding cattle and sheep, crop rotations, Irrigation, and drainage. Science and technology developed for industrial purposes in agriculture resulting in agribusiness of the mid 20th century. Poisons for pets developed in the 19th century. Throughout history, scientific and technological advances have greatly impacted the agriculture industry.
Farmers use technology to make advances in producing more food for a growing world. Farmers are using technologies such as motorized equipment, modified housing for animals and biotechnology which allow for improvement in agriculture. This is the most important revolutionary in the history of humanity from foraging to farming.
The number of mouths is increasing with the increase in population. There are currently 7.3 billion people. Feeding the world’s growing population will not be an easy task. How will we be able to provide safe, nutritious food to all these people?