Political Factors affecting food productivity

There are both pros and cons of the government policies on the political factors of food productivity. Government policies have clearly influenced the level of food intensity production in Singapore. With a population density of over 6000 people per square kilometre, Singapore is one of the most densely-populated countries in the world. Thus, maximising land use is always a challenge. In the 1980s, a decision was made by the government to replace traditional farming with high-technology farming. Although high-techonology farming causes less pollution and its more efficient, there are still disadvantages of high-technology farming.

The disadvantages of high-technology farming are that the expenses are high and Singapore doesn't have the proper climate and environment for high-technology farming. The use of pesticides may destroy the crops although they kill the insects and it also get pass onto us in the food that we eat. In addition, it requires large amounts of energy input to produce,transport and apply chemical fertilizers.

Government policy is defined as government action plan regarding use of land and money aimed at promoting development in the nation.

Government policies and decisions may affect farmers in different ways

-Financing and building of infrastructure like roads and port development to facilitate movement of produce to other markets and construction of dams for irrigation give farmers incentives to increase food production.

For example,construction of Three Gorges Dam across Yangtze in China.,to provide flood control ,hydro electricity and irrigation water from reservoir,boosts food production

-Subsidising food production by paying farmers to produce certain crop or paying for storage and marketing reduces farmers' financial burden.

-Government planning and control like favouring cheaper imports sometimes leads to little opportunity to innovste and hindering productivity.

-Singapore's government policy in 1980s to terminate traditional farming in view of limted land and competition for use of land for housing, industires and other commercial activities, has led to birth of high technology farming such as aeroponics and hydroponis sinch they are more productive with a higher output per unit land area.

-On a regional level, European Union's approval of imports from outside only when member countries are unable to produce. This protects local farmers.

-Lastly, government policy includes setting up agricultural training colleges for new farmers,advisory groups to tackle soil erosion problem and running research centres to produce better farming techniques.

-In Malaysia, the '60s and '70s government policy to help the poor rice farmers to increase their incomes has led to birth of a resettlement scheme known as Federal Land Development Authority(FLDA) whereby resettled farmers to other states such as Penang are given housing land loans and subsidies to grow cash crops like rubber and oil palm.

How the political factor can impact on the intensity of food production?


-As there resources which is limited, so the government could choose the resources such as money and land to be best used for as some for this decisions is long term. It have impact on food production as the farmer will not have enough land to cultivate their crops therefor the amount of food produce is lesser.

-Government also limit the amount of food such as fishing or slaughtering of animals as to prevent wastage of food or prevent extinction of some animals. This will affect the amount to be able to product.

-Government is trying to make development in the countries, therefor sometime the fields for growing crops is in the way of the development so the farmers have to left their fields causing lesser food production in the country.

Government also provide loans to farmers as farmers need to have capital to start their cultivation of crops. This will help the country to have more food production.

Government Policies
- A government policy is a plan of action that a government takes
- In 1908s, the Singapore Government made the dicision to replace traditional farming with high-tech farming
- Governemnt policies can also affect productivity at a regional level. For example, tax incentives for R&D
- Government may choose to build infrastructure such as dams for irrigation and roads. Hence, creating more conducive environments for farmers to increase food production
- Government may also subsidies the cost of food production. Hence, making it profitable to grow particular kind of crops
- Some countries may produce less food as the Government policies may not be in favor of agricultural activities, resulting in a lack of government support such as subsidies and infrastructure

Case Studies
Agriculture is a global industry, important to all governments. Syngenta helps to support three major political themes:
  • Food security: The United Nations defines food security as when all people, at all times, have access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life. The UN's Special Programme for Food Security aims to achieve the goal of halving the number of hungry in the world by 2015. Currently there are 852 million food insecure people in the world. Syngenta supports drives to increase food security by improving access to technologies that are safe, reliable and affordable.
  • Energy security: This refers to countries wanting to be less dependent for their fuel on other countries. By investing in biofuel technologies, Syngenta is helping them to provide alternatives to oil and coal.
  • Climate change. Using biofuels helps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The European Union has a target of replacing over 5% of all transportation fuel with renewable fuels by 2010. Creating high yields on existing farmland reduces the drive to cut down forests for new agricultural land. Loss of forests has big impacts on wildlife and also on climate.
Syngenta also plays an important role in creating networks of groups working to resolve local and global issues related to fuel and food. For instance, Syngenta is partnering with the Royal Society of Chemistry to set up the Pan-Africa Chemistry Network. This brings together universities, schools, scientists, teachers and students in Africa to share ideas and resources in conferences and workshops.
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