Feed the World: How Can We Make More of Our Crops?

Image Credit: ReSplashed

With a growing population of humans, the strain on the land is certainly showing. This means that we need to find new ways to feed ourselves without ruining the environment. In other words, we need to figure out the optimal way to sustain our population long term.

Enter agronomy.

This is the science of figuring out how to produce more food, keep the soil healthy and even develop healthier foods. While you might think that this depends on GM crops, it is actually much more diverse and takes in all kinds of methods such as crop rotation, the best fertilizers and pest control too.

Specialists such as MKC have been working on various agronomy techniques for years and can offer all sorts of valuable advice. You can contact us for more information, but in the meantime, here are a few things you can do yourself to make the most of your land.

Selective Breeding

One of the best ways to produce excellent crops is to select your breeding plants very carefully. Gardeners and farmers have been doing this for hundreds of years and it is quite a simple process. All you need to do is pick your best plants and breed them together, then do the same over and again until you notice the characteristics you are looking for.

If you aren’t comfortable with GM crops, you can use selective pollination to breed the healthiest plants in order to encourage those traits. Over a few generations, you should see some significant differences and be able to produce bigger crops, more resistant crops or even novel, unique crops.

Mixed Cropping

Sometimes when looking for ways to innovate and improve current methods, the past is a good place to look. Planting single crops is a relatively recent idea, but before the industrialization of agriculture, farmers would plant multiple crops in the same field. With the right crops planted together, this can still create the perfect situation for crops to grow. This is called mixed cropping.

Even on a large farm, mixing crops like maize, beans and pumpkins is a great way to improve the way that your crops grow, keeping the soil in good condition and optimizing the yield you get. With the different species of crops, you will also attract different beneficial insects, creating a fabulous biodiversity.

Technological Advances

Though we tend to think of technology as a cause of environmental problems, it is also the best chance we have of understanding the environment and optimizing conditions to improve the situation. In fact, whether you use technology to track changes, control climates or monitor results, you can certainly find a way to put it to good use.

As more and more food is required, it is important that farmers look to every possible way of improving crops and looking after the soil they grow in. Choosing the right crops through selective breeding, planting complementary crops together to create a biodiverse growing area and using technology to track results can all work together to build the future of agricultural practice.

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