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The Stages in Agriculture

Stages in Agriculture_111322A
[Stages in Agriculture - ScienceDirect]

- Overview

Agriculture is considered an important pillar of the world's economy and also satisfies one of the basic need of human being i.e. food. In most of the countries it is considered the major source of employment. Many countries lstill use the traditional way of farming, farmers are reluctant to use advanced technologies while farming because of either the lack of knowledge, heavy cost or because they are unaware about the advantages of these technologies.  

Lack of knowledge of soil types, yields, crops, weather, and improper use of pesticides, problems in irrigation, erroneous harvesting and lack of information about market trend led to the loss of farmers or adds to additional cost. Lack of knowledge in each stage of agriculture leads to new problems or increases the old problems and add the cost to farming. Growth in the population day by day also increases the pressure on the agriculture sector. Overall losses in the agriculture processes starting from crop selection to selling of products are very high. 


- The Steps in Agriculture

While performing agriculture tasks the steps as below is generally followed by farmers. 

  • Step 1: Selection of Crop
  • Step 2: Land Preparation
  • Step 3: Seed Sowing
  • Step 4: Irrigation & fertilizing
  • Step 5: Crop Maintenance [use of pesticides, crop pruning etc.]
  • Step 6: Harvesting
  • Step 7: Post-Harvesting activities


- The 3 Stages in Agriculture

As per the above algorithm, the agriculture related tasks are categorized in three stages: Pre-harvesting, Harvaesting, and Post-harvesting.

During pre-harvest tasks, farmers focus on crop selection, soil preparation, seeding, irrigation, and crop maintenance, including pesticide application, pruning, and more. In yield estimation, farmers perform activities such as yield mapping and fruit counting so that they can predict yield and make necessary arrangements at or after harvest. On the other hand, harvesting farmers are concerned with the maturity of the crop or the quality required by the fruit market. After harvest, farmers focus on post-harvest storage and processing systems.

The table below summarizes few works in each stage of the agricultural tasks. 

  • Pre-Harvesting: Soil, seeds quality, fertiliser/pesticide application, pruning, cultivar selection, genetic and environmental conditions, irrigation, crop load, weed detection, disease detection.
  • Harvesting: Fruit/crop size, skin color, firmness, taste, quality, maturity stage, market window, fruit detection and classification.
  • Post-Harvesting: Factors affecting the fruit shelf-life such as temperature, humidity, gasses used in fruit containers, usage of chemicals in postharvest and fruit handling processes to retain the quality, fruit grading as per quality.



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