The Impact of Globalization on Agriculture

Globalization has had an impact on almost all industries. Agriculture is not an exception. In fact, if there is one industry that has been revolutionized by globalization, it has to be the agricultural industry. Sometimes you just have to be amazed when you look at how things used to work, within the agricultural industry, in the pre-globalization era, and how things are working now in the era of globalization. The difference is mind-boggling, especially in the nations that have embraced globalization wholeheartedly. 

On the upside, we find that globalization has enhanced efficiency in agriculture. In this era of globalization, farmers know that they are ‘competing with the world’. So they have to be efficient – knowing that the consumers have the option of buying from the global market, if they (the local farmers) prove to be inefficient. So it is akin to the situation we see in the banking industry: where, for instance, an individual knows that if he delays too much to, say, respond to capital one mail offer, they would be at risk of missing out on the offer altogether. Similarly, farmers in the era of globalization are forced to move fast, to ensure that they able to give the consumers the produce they need, at the best possible prices and in a timely manner.

On the downside, we find that globalization has often led to unfair competition. This is where, for instance, farmers in poor nations have found themselves having to compete with heavily subsidized farmers in the richer nations. Obviously, the farmers who don’t enjoy subsidies are unable to compete favorably. To use an analogy, expecting an unsubsidized farmer to compete with one who is subsidized is like expecting an athlete who is running on foot to run faster than another one who is on a motorcycle. In a very short duration of time, the one who is running on foot is bound to get tired… So you find that globalization has (in some cases) made the farming communities in less developed nations poorer than they were in the pre-globalization era.

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