Farming in the future

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

Farming in the future, despite what some in the “industry” may try to tell us, is not going to be done on a larger scale with ever bigger machines, it is just not feasible, aside from not being sustainable.

The future of farming is the way of the past, and that also applies in much the same way to forestry.

With fuel oils and gasoline continuing to rise there is simply no way that farming operations can continue on the scale of the huge agri-businesses and big machines, not even on today's scale, let alone on a bigger one. It is not only unsustainable; it simply will not be possible.

Human power and that of animals, of horses, asses, mules, and oxen, etc., will be required and will be very much the order of the day.

While the powers-that-be and industry is not prepared to tell this truth to the people the people better realize that that is going to be the way it will come to pass.

Fertilizers too will have to be of the natural variety as, once the oil, the cheap and abundant oil, is history, so will fertilizers and other agro-chemicals based on petroleum and its derivatives.

Farming operations will, thus, as will forestry operations, become much more labor intensive and time consuming and of the sort that our grandparents (mine at least) would have known. Cutting hay with animal power or by men and women with a scythe simply takes that much longer, as will all other things.

Going to town from farms and rural areas will, I am afraid to say, become rather an adventure again and an undertaking that will take a least a day for many, especially in the big open spaces of the USA, Canada and Australia. Such trips will not be a daily occurrence no more.

Due to this the itinerant trader, the rolling shop, may become a common sight once again, in all areas, and will not just be a phenomenon of some very rural areas of the likes of the Australian Outback where they still could be found some years ago, only based on trucks than on horse wagons.

Human and animal power, plus, maybe, some old and adapted ways of today, will be the order of the day again in future farming and forestry operations, in the same way as personal transportation is, once again, predominately human-powered, that is to say, walking and cycling.

© 2011