Agribusiness

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Agribusiness: a display of a John Deere 7800 tractor with Houle slurry trailer, Case IH combine harvester, New Holland FX 25 forage harvester with corn head Agricultural machinery.jpg
Agribusiness: a display of a John Deere 7800 tractor with Houle slurry trailer, Case IH combine harvester, New Holland FX 25 forage harvester with corn head

Agribusiness is the business of agricultural production. The term is a portmanteau of agriculture and business and was coined in 1957 by John Davis and Ray Goldberg. [1] It includes agrichemicals, breeding, crop production (farming or contract farming), distribution, farm machinery, processing, and seed supply, as well as marketing and retail sales. All agents of the food and fiber value chain and those institutions that influence it are part of the agribusiness system.

Contents

Within the agriculture industry, "agribusiness" refers to the range of activities and disciplines encompassed by modern food production. There are academic degrees specializing in agribusiness, departments of agribusiness, agribusiness trade associations, and agribusiness publications.

In the context of agribusiness management in academia, each individual element of agriculture production and distribution may be described as agribusinesses. However, the term "agribusiness" most often emphasizes the "interdependence" of these various sectors within the production chain. [2]

Among critics of large-scale, industrialized, vertically integrated food production, the term agribusiness is used negatively, synonymous with corporate farming . As such, it is often contrasted with smaller family-owned farms.

Examples

Examples of agribusinesses include seed and agrichemical producers like Dow AgroSciences, DuPont, Monsanto, and Syngenta; AB Agri (part of Associated British Foods) animal feeds, biofuels, and micro-ingredients, ADM, grain transport and processing; John Deere, farm machinery producer; Ocean Spray, farmer's cooperative; and Purina Farms, agritourism farm.

As concern over global warming intensifies, biofuels derived from crops are gaining increased public and scientific attention. This is driven by factors such as oil price spikes, the need for increased energy security, concern over greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels, and support from government subsidies. In Europe and in the US, increased research and production of biofuels have been mandated by law. [3]

Studies and reports

Studies of agribusiness often come from the academic fields of agricultural economics and management studies, sometimes called agribusiness management. [2] To promote more development of food economies, many government agencies support the research and publication of economic studies and reports exploring agribusiness and agribusiness practices. Some of these studies are on foods produced for export and are derived from agencies focused on food exports. These agencies include the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), Austrade, and New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE).

The Federation of International Trade Associations publishes studies and reports by FAS and AAFC, as well as other non-governmental organizations on its website. [4]

In their book A Concept of Agribusiness [1] , Ray Goldberg and John Davis provided a rigorous economic framework for the field. They traced a complex value-added chain that begins with the farmer's purchase of seed and livestock and ends with a product fit for the consumer's table. Agribusiness boundary expansion is driven by a variety of transaction costs.[ citation needed ]

See also

Notes and references

  1. 1 2 Davis, John H.; Goldberg, Ray A. (1957). A Concept of Agribusiness. Division of Research, Graduate School of Business Administration, Harvard University.
  2. 1 2 Ng, Desmond; Siebert, John W. (2009). "Toward Better Defining the Field of Agribusiness Management" (PDF). International Food and Agribusiness Management Review. 12 (4).
  3. "Backpedaling on Biofuels". Wild.org. 2008-08-01. Archived from the original on 2012-09-19. Retrieved 2013-05-02.
  4. "fita.org". fita.org. Retrieved 2013-05-02.

Further reading

Related Research Articles

Bunge Limited is an agribusiness and food company, incorporated in Bermuda, and headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, United States. As well as being an international soybean exporter, it is also involved in food processing, grain trading, and fertilizer. It competes with Cargill and Archer Daniels Midland. The company has approximately 32,000 employees in 40 countries.

The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to agriculture:

Farmer Person that works in agriculture

A farmer is a person engaged in agriculture, raising living organisms for food or raw materials. The term usually applies to people who do some combination of raising field crops, orchards, vineyards, poultry, or other livestock. A farmer might own the farmed land or might work as a laborer on land owned by others, but in advanced economies, a farmer is usually a farm owner, while employees of the farm are known as farm workers, or farmhands. However, in the not so distant past, a farmer was a person who promotes or improves the growth of by labor and attention, land or crops or raises animals.

Organic farming Method of agriculture meant to be environmentally friendly

Organic farming is an alternative agricultural system which originated early in the 20th century in reaction to rapidly changing farming practices. Certified organic agriculture accounts for 70 million hectares globally, with over half of that total in Australia. Organic farming continues to be developed by various organizations today. It is defined by the use of fertilizers of organic origin such as compost manure, green manure, and bone meal and places emphasis on techniques such as crop rotation and companion planting. Biological pest control, mixed cropping and the fostering of insect predators are encouraged. Organic standards are designed to allow the use of naturally occurring substances while prohibiting or strictly limiting synthetic substances. For instance, naturally occurring pesticides such as pyrethrin and rotenone are permitted, while synthetic fertilizers and pesticides are generally prohibited. Synthetic substances that are allowed include, for example, copper sulfate, elemental sulfur and Ivermectin. Genetically modified organisms, nanomaterials, human sewage sludge, plant growth regulators, hormones, and antibiotic use in livestock husbandry are prohibited. Reasons for advocation of organic farming include advantages in sustainability, openness, self-sufficiency, autonomy/independence, health, food security, and food safety.

Good agricultural practice (GAP) is a certification system for agriculture, specifying procedures that must be implemented to create food for consumers or further processing that is safe and wholesome, using sustainable methods. While there are numerous competing definitions of what methods constitute good agricultural practice there are several broadly accepted schemes that producers can adhere to.

Food industry collective of diverse businesses that supplies much of the worlds food

The food industry is a complex, global collective of diverse businesses that supplies most of the food consumed by the world's population. Only subsistence farmers, those who survive on what they grow, and hunter-gatherers can be considered outside the scope of the modern food industry.

A smallholding is a small farm. Smallholdings are usually farms supporting a single family with a mixture of cash crops and subsistence farming. As a country becomes more affluent, smallholdings may not be self-sufficient but are valued primarily for the rural lifestyle that they provide for the owners, who often do not earn their livelihood from the farm. There are an estimated 500 million smallholder farms in the world, supporting almost two billion people. Today some companies try to include smallholdings into their value chain, providing seed, feed or fertilizer to improve production. Some say that this model shows benefits for both parties.

Canada is one of the largest agricultural producers and exporters in the world. As with other developed nations, the proportion of the population and GDP devoted to agriculture fell dramatically over the 20th century but it remains an important element of the Canadian economy. A wide range of agriculture is practised in Canada, from sprawling wheat fields of the prairies to summer produce of the Okanagan valley. In the federal government, overview of Canadian agriculture is the responsibility of the Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food.

Agriculture in Nigeria

Agriculture in Nigeria is a branch of the economy in Nigeria, providing employment for about 30% of the population as of 2010. The sector is being transformed by commercialization at the small, medium and large-scale enterprise levels.

Agriculture in Saskatchewan

Agriculture in Saskatchewan is the production of various food, feed, or fiber commodities to fulfill domestic and international human and animal sustenance needs. The newest agricultural economy to be developed in renewable biofuel production or agricultural biomass which is marketed as ethanol or biodiesel. Plant cultivation and livestock production have abandoned subsistence agricultural practices in favor of intensive technological farming resulting in cash crops which contribute to the economy of Saskatchewan. The particular commodity produced is dependent upon its particular biogeography or ecozone of Geography of Saskatchewan. Agricultural techniques and activities have evolved over the years. The first nation nomadic hunter-gatherer lifestyle and the early immigrant ox and plow farmer proving up on his quarter section of land in no way resemble the present farmer operating huge amounts of land or livestock with their attendant technological mechanization. Challenges to the future of Saskatchewan agriculture include developing sustainable water management strategies for a cyclical drought prone climate in south western Saskatchewan, updating dryland farming techniques, stabilizing organic definitions or protocols and the decision to grow, or not to grow genetically modified foods. Domestically and internationally, some commodities have faced increased scrutiny from disease and the ensuing marketing issues.

Intensive crop farming modern form of farming

Intensive crop farming is a modern form of farming that refers to the industrialized production of crops. Intensive crop farming's methods include innovation in agricultural machinery, farming methods, genetic engineering technology, techniques for achieving economies of scale in production, the creation of new markets for consumption, patent protection of genetic information, and global trade. These methods are widespread in developed nations.

Agro- and agri- are prefixes that usually refer to agriculture. The following items use the prefix 'agro-' or alternatively 'agri-':

Richard Gilmore is President/CEO of GIC Trade, Inc., an international agribusiness company with partner offices in Beijing, São Paulo, Quito, Moscow, and Tel Aviv. He is also Founder and Chairman of the Global Food Safety Forum (GFSF), a non-profit industry organization focused on educational and training activities in Asia with offices in the People's Republic of China (PRC) and Vietnam. A trade economist and businessman with a Ph.D. from the Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva, where he was a Fulbright Fellow, Gilmore served as Trustee for Bayer CropSciences, Syngenta Corporation, and Agrium, Inc. He is currently Trustee in the U.S. and Canada for Nutrien. He also served as Special External Advisor to the White House/USAID for the Private Sector/Global Food Security and Managing Director of the Global Food Safety Forum (GFSF) in Beijing. Gilmore developed two agro-carbon instruments: Commodity Plus Carbon (CPC)and GIC Ag Carbon Intensity Index.

Agriculture in the United Kingdom An Economic Sector In The United Kingdom

Agriculture in the United Kingdom uses 69% of the country's land area, employs 1.5% of its workforce and contributes 0.6% of its gross value added. The UK produces less than 60% of the food it consumes. Agricultural activity occurs in most rural locations, it is concentrated in East Anglia and the South West (livestock). There are 212,000 farm holdings, which vary widely in size.

Agroecology in Latin America

Agroecology is an applied science that involves the adaptation of ecological concepts to the structure, performance, and management of sustainable agroecosystems. In Latin America, agroecological practices have a long history and vary between regions but share three main approaches or levels: plot scale, farm scale, and food system scale. Agroecology in Latin American countries can be used as a tool for providing both ecological, economic, and social benefits to the communities that practice it, as well as maintaining high biodiversity and providing refuges for flora and fauna in these countries. Due to its broad scope and versatility, it is often referred to as "a science, a movement, a practice."

Agricultural engineering applied science

Agricultural engineering is the engineering of agricultural production and processing. Agricultural engineering combines the disciplines of mechanical, civil, electrical, Food science and chemical engineering principles with a knowledge of agricultural principles according to technological principles. A key goal of this discipline is to improve the efficacy and sustainability of agricultural practices.

Land grabbing large-scale acquisition of farmland (over 1,000 ha) whether by purchase, leases or other means.

Land grabbing is the contentious issue of large-scale land acquisitions: the buying or leasing of large pieces of land by domestic and transnational companies, governments, and individuals. While used broadly throughout history, land grabbing as used in the 21st century primarily refers to large-scale land acquisitions following the 2007–08 world food price crisis. Obtaining water resources is usually critical to the land acquisitions, so it has also led to an associated trend of water grabbing. By prompting food security fears within the developed world and new found economic opportunities for agricultural investors, the food price crisis caused a dramatic spike in large-scale agricultural investments, primarily foreign, in the Global South for the purpose of industrial food and biofuels production. Although hailed by investors, economists and some developing countries as a new pathway towards agricultural development, investment in land in the 21st century has been criticized by some non-governmental organizations and commentators as having a negative impact on local communities. International law is implicated when attempting to regulate these transactions.

Contract farming involves agricultural production being carried out on the basis of an agreement between the buyer and farm producers. Sometimes it involves the buyer specifying the quality required and the price, with the farmer agreeing to deliver at a future date. More commonly, however, contracts outline conditions for the production of farm products and for their delivery to the buyer's premises. The farmer undertakes to supply agreed quantities of a crop or livestock product, based on the quality standards and delivery requirements of the purchaser. In return, the buyer, usually a company, agrees to buy the product, often at a price that is established in advance. The company often also agrees to support the farmer through, e.g., supplying inputs, assisting with land preparation, providing production advice and transporting produce to its premises. The term "outgrower scheme" is sometimes used synonymously with contract farming, most commonly in Eastern and Southern Africa. Contract farming can be used for many agricultural products, although in developing countries it is less common for staple crops such as rice and maize.

Digital agriculture refers to tools that digitally collect, store, analyze, and share electronic data and/or information along the agricultural value chain. Other definitions, such as those from the United Nations Project Breakthrough, Cornell University, and Purdue University, also emphasize the role of digital technology in the optimization of food systems.     

This glossary of agriculture is a list of definitions of terms and concepts used in agriculture, its sub-disciplines, and related fields. For other glossaries relevant to agricultural science, see Glossary of biology, Glossary of ecology, and Glossary of botany.