Agriculture is among the key sectors of our economy that provides the basic needs, including food. Majority of people mainly depend on this sector for their livelihood. When it comes to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), this sector contributes the highest percentage. The study of agricultural education is therefore of highest importance in the growth and development of the country’s economy. For many years, it has been used to produce essential food crops. Today, it’s beyond just farming and it includes fruit cultivation, arbitrary, dairy, forestry, poultry, mushroom, bee keeping and much more. In addition to providing raw material and food, it also creates employment opportunities for many people. In regards to that, the importance of agricultural education can’t be ignored, and here are some of the benefits of studying agriculture.
1. Contributes to Economic Development
Since agriculture employs a large population, it contributes to the country’s economic development, hence improving the national income level and standard of living. The fast development rate in this sector provides progressive outlook and increased motivation for growth and development. It therefore helps to create better atmosphere for the country’s overall economic development. This means economic development mainly depends on agricultural growth rate.
2. Offers Great Employment Opportunities
Construction of drainage systems, irrigation schemes, and other agricultural activities is very important as it offers more employment opportunities to many people. For instance, in developing countries, this sector provides more opportunities to a huge labor force, hence reducing the high rate of unemployment caused by the fast-growing population.
3. Source of Livelihood
Agriculture is actually the main source livelihood for many people. About 70-percent of people directly depend on it as a mean of living. The higher percentage is because of lack proper development on other areas to absorb the fast-growing population across the world. In developed countries, however, don’t engage in agricultural activities.
4. Main Source of Raw Materials
Agriculture is also the main source of most raw materials used in various major industries, such as sugar, jute fabric and cotton, edible and non-edible oils. Additionally, many industries that process farm produce such as rice, vegetables and fruits get their raw materials from this sector.
5. Foreign Exchange Resources
The export trade of a country relies greatly on agricultural sector. For instance, agricultural commodities, such as raw cotton, oil-seeds, oil, coffee, spices, and tobacco just to mention a few accounts for approx. 18% of the country’s entire exports value. This shows that most products that come from agriculture can be a good source of earning foreign exchange for a country. It’s also the primary source of national income, especially for developing countries. For developed countries though, agriculture can contribute a small percentage to their national income.
6. Ensures Food Security
Since agriculture plays a role in the country’s economy, it can ensure food security for a nation if it’s stable. Food security comes with many benefits, including preventing malnutrition, which has been believed a major problem facing developing countries across the world. Many countries depend on agricultural products and associated industries as their main source of revenue.
With all these benefits, it’s now clear that the importance of agricultural education in the schools can’t be ignored. Studying agriculture in school doesn’t necessarily mean that you are going to become a farmer. This sector typically comes with a lot of opportunities.