Institution of Learning: Small Farms versus Large Farms The small farms versus large farms debate is the conflict between the supporters of modern farming methods of extensive large-scale farming and the conservative believers in local small-scale farming which stems from the effects of each method of farming on the debating sides…
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This essay looks at some of the views of these debaters by reviewing their thoughts in their publications and/or articles. The held view by the proponents of large scale farming is that large scale farming is the solution to economic revival. One proponent, Jason Smith, asserts that it is impractical for anyone who is dependent on farming as a means of livelihood to hold onto a small scale practice when his goal should be to maximize his profits which he can do by enlarging the farming enterprise. Smith proposes that only maximizing a farming enterprise can attain the goals of a business aspiring to be successful. In talking about animal farming, Smith argues that small scale farming is inefficient and subjects animals to more duress as compared to large scale/factory farming as the latter have a better ability to afford the quality health services for their animals. He views small scale farming as being only sentimental and of less economic benefit to the farming industry, terming it a hobby (Smith 2010). This view is supported by Tracie McMillan in her book “The American Way of Eating” which, though in a criticizing manner, reveals the profit-making of large scale farming in the factory farm produce of Applebee’s and Walmart. ...
Berry believes that small-scale farming is an important contribution to local economies which are essential in the health of the environment as they ensure the survival of species thus the well-being of the planet. Berry criticizes the principle of the global economy of extensive exploitation aimed at maximizing profits at the expense of an area without regard for what is workable in the area. Berry blames this principle which supports large scale farming for the disruption of efficiently working local economies. He refutes the ideologies of global industrialists terming this industrialism as the destroyer of local economies and local employment, proposing that if local economies, of small-scale farmers, are left to their native ideologies are self sustaining and in no manner at all lacking (Berry 48). Another assertion of the large scale farming proponents is that large scale farms are the effective supplier of food to the countries’ population. In an analysis of the proportion of the tillable farmland in the United States against the total population, Jason Smith proposes that the use of machinery and technology and investing in large size farmlands is the most viable solution to the imminent food crisis. The predictable rise in the demand for food in the future is a problem that can be resolved if investment in large scale farming is increased (Smith 2010). This view is supported by Tracy Mc Millan’s book “The American Way of Eating” that denotes the extent of the dependency of the American population on food from stores owned by large scale farming companies (McMillan 1-336). In her book “Every Farm a Factory: The Industrial Ideal in American Agriculture”, Deborah Fitzgerald supports the idea that large-scale agriculture is the
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