Agriculture is a very important industry to every country; most countries start with agriculture before further economic development. Agriculture as it provides the resources for; the basis basic of human being'shomo sapient livelihoods, environmental protection, economic activities and further developments. In most countries, agriculture has been at the fore front of economic development. "Agriculture seems to have begun around 10,000 BC in China..." As (Ali, 2009) Shamsavari stated in his lecture notes of "Agriculture and Economic Development" page 1, especially in China, agriculture has a long history of supporting human life and dynasties growth.
To discuss the contribution of the agriculture industry towards development of a developing countryLEDC, we first have tlo clarify the definition of agriculture. Therefore, in the essay, the first paragraph will be used to explain the industry, its components and its features to give a whole picture of the concept of agriculture. This will be followed by the industry's major contributions to the developments of China such as surplus of food, reproduction of food, greater division of labour and its influences to economic development; problems that arise, such as Urban Bias will be examined after that; prospect of China's agriculture industry will also be discussed and followed by a summary of the essay in the last paragraph.
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Different from the early stage of production systems, agriculture alloweds humans to grow food before they needed it, instead of hunting and searching for it only when they are were hungry. Agriculture composes of farming and growing crops, like wheat, millet and rice; keeping animals, such as chickens, sheep and cattle; Fishing, which provides seafood; logging, providinges wood for furniture, paper and construction and finally;; Growing flowers and plants for household consumption, such as gardening and festival related purposes. Agriculture is the second of the three stages of production systems, it has two main features: surplus of food and reproduction of food of social. Both of them contribute to the development of a country and will be discussed later in specific to the China's development.
As mentioned before, agriculture has two main features of providing surplus of food and reproduction of crops for future. Agriculture helps humans to create food which is more thanbeyond their needs. A surplus of food released some of the workers from the agriculture industry into other sectors, such as manufacturing, industrial and intellectual activities. In China, the surplus of food from agriculture made her become one of the early civilization countries. Some inventions such as gunpowder, compass, paper and printing had been achieved and improvements of farming technology had been made during civilization. People in China started to use iron tools and cows to help farming. Before that, tools were made of wood or stone and human labour iswas required to pull ploughs. After the invention of iron tools, cows are were replaced to work with iron ploughs and enlarge farming spaces in a shorter period of time.
The surplus of food from agriculture not only feeds all the workers in China, it even provides seeds or baby animals for reproduction of food. People in the country no longer hunt and search for food only when they are hungry, instead they stock food and plan for their future by delaying their consumption of it, such as keeping baby animals instead of eating them straight away so that they can reproduce and more can be consumed later. A greater division of labour was another result of the agriculture industry. The increase of in division of labour is vital for the further increases of in productivity, and thus it becomes a basis for modern development.
Contributions brought by agriculture to the economic development including include three aspectsadvances: agriculture as an economic activities activity or an industry, as a livelihood and as a provider of environmental services according to the World Bank of 2008. The agriculture industry helps to enlarge the consumption market by making people become consumers for goods. Farmers, fishermen and butchers do not just consume their own product to survive,survive; they also have demand on for other goods, which makes them becomemakes them a consumer of in the market and have contribution a contributor to the industries'y development. For example, a Chinese lady working as a raw silk washing lady would like to buy food and cosmetics in the market as welltoo. Besides consumption, they are suppliers for those industries at the same time. Farmers supply raw materials, textiles and food; fishermen supply seafood; butchers supply meat and leather for industries to function. Agriculture also acted as a basis for providing factors of production to different industries, these input factors included labour, land and capital. For example, around 100 to 200 AD, Chinese people started an industry to produce ceramics. Llike other industries, to get workers to work in the industryobtain workers, China needs needed to have a surplus of food in order to allow some workers from the agriculture agriculture industry to join the ceramics industry, (known aswhich is the "labour"). To start their production, they needed a piece of land for the manufacturing process to take place. By cutting down forest, land could be used to develop an industry. According to Irving Fisher, "capital" refers to any productive asset capable of generating a stream of future services or income. Kilns and clay are both the capital of the industry.Apart from domestic industries, agriculture also supported trade between China and the rest of the world. Export of agriculture products brought foreign exchange into China and allowed her to spend on imports, international trades with other countries fasten speed up China's economic and technology growth.Lots of people in the world depends on agriculture as a livelihood, not only producing food for survive, but also acted as a security base. Recently, many people in Guangdong province returned to their farming industry after they lost their job in exports field during the financial crisis in 2008. The Aagriculture industry can also be good for the environment in a few ways: it helped to create varieties of produce and the economic prosperity that brought by the agriculture also helps to save the endangered animals, like the giant pandas in China. 40 giant pandas were reserved in China in 2006 due to increase in knowledge and resources in saving pandas.
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Urban Bias is a theory by Michael Lipton in 1977. The theory brought up the idea of that the agriculture industry had relatively less influence and received less resourcesfewer resources when the leading group of that country is deciding policies to improve peoplepeople's welfare. The reason behind behind this is the lack of knowledge to the industry of the leading power. Normally, leaders in of a country lived in urban areas which wereis far away from the rural areasplace that where agriculture took place. Due to insufficient contact with the industry, when leaders have to decide country matters like resource allocation, tax payment and people welfare, they tends to pay put less attention on the agriculture industry. Inefficiency in allocating resources and widen ther income gaps between the rich and the poor are the results of urban bias. According to figure 1 in the appendix, countries' public spending on agriculture industry and the industries' share of their GDP are not directly and proportionally related. And according to figure 9.1,Todaro and Smith (2009, p, 434), it explained that urban bias can widen the world divergence between the rich and the poor.
Agriculture industry in China is expected to be more efficient in two ways: little labour capital involved and an increase in output due to efficient use of machinery. According to figure 9.1, the diagram showed that as a country develops, less human labour will be involved in the industry as the GDP per capita rises. Figure 9.2, a diagram showing cereal yields by different countries in the world, using cereal as an example and explaining the output from developed countries are more than that of developing countries. According to many economists, China will take over United States and become the next strongest economy in the near future. If the prediction of these economists is correct, China will soon become a developed country and hence their product yield from agriculture will increase significantly as illustrated in figure 9.2.
Agriculture is vital to the development of most of the countries, especially to China. The influences of agriculturiale industry to on China's development are not just economically, but also on Chinese morale, principles of Chinese medicines and China's politics, etc. Even though it has lots of contributions to the country's development, problems aroused should not be ignored. The history of China had shown us the importance of agriculture as well as the destructiveness from the problems aroused.