For decades, agriculture has been associated with the production of essential food crops. At present, agriculture above and beyond farming includes forestry, dairy, fruit cultivation, poultry, beekeeping, mushroom, arbitrary, etc.



Today processing, marketing, and distribution of crops and livestock products, etc. Are all acknowledged as part of current agriculture? Thus, agriculture could be referred to as the production, processing, promotion, and distribution of agricultural products. Agriculture plays a critical role in the entire life of a given economy.


Agriculture is the backbone of the economic system of a given country. In addition to providing food and raw material, agriculture also provides employment opportunities to a very large percentage of the population. Go through this article to know more about the agriculture important.

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Below are the factors why agriculture is important:

  1. Source of livelihood: It is a very reliable source of livelihood for mankind for the past many centuries. Many people from developing nations rely on agriculture for livelihood. Some people involved in other businesses or jobs still have agriculture as a side business.
  2. Contribution to national revenue: Agriculture is the premier source of our national income. According to National Income Committee and C.S.O., in 1960-61, 52 per cent of national income was contributed by agriculture and allied occupations. In 1976-77, this sector alone contributed 42.2 per cent while in 1981-82, its contribution was to the tune of 41.8 per cent. In 2001-02, it contributed around 32.4 per cent of national income. This was further reduced to 28 per cent in 1999-2000. Contrary to this, the proportion of agriculture in U.K. is only 3.1, in USA it is 3 percent, 2.5 per cent in Canada, 6 per cent in Japan, 7.6 per cent in Australia.
  3. Supply of food as well as fodder: Agriculture sector also provides fodder for livestock. Cow and buffalo provide protective food in the form of milk and they also provide draught power for farm operations. Moreover, it also meets the food requirements of the people. Import of food grains has been very small in recent years, rather export avenues are being looked for.
  4. Significance to the International Trade: It is the agricultural sector that feeds country’s trade. Agricultural products like tea, sugar, rice, tobacco, spices etc. If the development process of agriculture is smooth, export increases and imports are reduced considerably.Thus, it helps to reduce the adverse balance of payments and save our foreign exchange. This amount can be well utilized to import other necessary inputs, raw-material, machinery and other infra-structure which is otherwise useful for the promotion of economic development of the country.
  5. Marketable Surplus: The development of agricultural sector leads to marketable surplus. As country develops more and more people are to be engaged in mining, manufacturing and other non- agricultural sector. All these people depend upon the food production which they can meet from the marketable surplus.
  6. Source of Raw Materials: Agriculture has been the source of raw materials to the leading industries like cotton and jute textiles, sugar, tobacco, edible and non-edible oils etc. All these depend directly on agriculture. Apart from this, many others like processing of fruits and vegetables, dal milling, rice husking, gur making also depend on agriculture for their raw material. According to United Nations Survey, the industries with raw material of agricultural origin accounted for 50 per cent of the value added and 64 per cent of all jobs in the industrial sector.
  7. It is important in transport: Agriculture is the main support for railways and roadways which transport bulk of agricultural produce from farm to the mandies and factories. Internal trade is mostly in agricultural products. Besides, the finance of the Government, also, to the large extent, depends upon the prosperity of agricultural sector.
  8. Foreign Exchange Resources: Agricultural sector constitutes an important place in the country’s export trade. According to an estimate, agricultural commodities like jute, tobacco, oilseeds, spices, raw cotton, tea and coffee.
  9. Great Employment Opportunities: The agricultural sector is significant as it provides greater employment opportunities in the construction of irrigation projects, drainage system and other such activities. With the fast growing population and high incidence of unemployment and disguised unemployment in backward countries, it is only agriculture sector which provides more employment chances to the labour force. In this way, significance of agriculture emerges more and more.
  10. Economic Development: In the course of economic development, agriculture employs majority of people. This means raising the level of the national income and standard of living of the common man. The rapid” rate of growth in agriculture sector gives progressive outlook and further motivation for development. As a result, it helps to create proper atmosphere for general economic development of the economy. Thus, economic development depends on the rate at which agriculture grows.

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