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We have not been able to improve our agriculture a lot. It is in still traditional and labour-intensive. Subsistence nature and lower productivity are its major characteristics. Agriculture sector has been given due priority by all the economic plans; still expected outcome has not been seen.
The following factors are responsible for our agricultural backwardness.
Nepalese agriculture used traditional methods of farming. Agricultural tools are not advanced. Due to traditional farming, work is very difficult and production in low. Farmers are not skilled in the methods of the modern agriculture. They are also not healthy enough to realize the potential of their farms. Crops and grains are destroyed by pests, insects and weeds. Animals also cannot give good yield when they suffer from diseases.
We have not been able to utilize our vast water resources to irrigate cultivable land. Hardly about 20% of the total land under cultivation has good irrigation facilities. So farmers have to depend highly on monsoon rain which in not timely and reliable. In winter much of the farm land remains unused due to the lack of irrigation facilities. During each monsoon landslides and floods excessive rain damage of the crop land.
Due to lack of market our agro-based products rot in the places where they are grown. Food grains grow in the Terai cannot be transported to other areas easily nor can fruits such as apple grown in the north easily get market in the south. Due to lack of storage facilities , agricultural products suffer low price.
Land distribution in not scientific and democratic. Those who are actual tillers don't own land at all while those who don't even tread field hoard huge areas of land and leave it uncultivated. Fertile valley and plains are being occupied by the settlement and industries. Besides, there in over-fragmentation of agricultural land i.e. broken into too small parcels. It is difficult to cultivate such parcels. All this results in low production.
Less than 20% of total area of Nepal in under cultivation. But over 60% of population overburdens the land. With rapid population growth, number of farmers cultivating the same field in increasing. When the share of land for a farmer gets very low, per ca-pita production decreases.
Nepalese farmers are subsistence farmers. They are compelled to take loan even to run their family. They born in debt and die in debt. Interest rates are high. Much of their production goes in paying interests. In such conditions they cannot afford applying new technology and machinery to improve farming.
A certain soil type and climate type in suitable for one or few crops. There are diverse climate and soil types in Neal. But there have not been enough researches and experiments to find the best crops and the best climate and soil type. Government plans and endeavors are quite insufficient in this regard.
The following measures should be taken to improve Nepalese agriculture: -
Yes, there are more problems of Nepalese agriculture than the ones in the lesson, which are listed below:
Poor transport system is a major problem of Nepalese agriculture because due to lack of transport food grains cannot be transported to other areas easily nor can be stored for longer time. Poor transport system causes decrease in price for agricultural products produced by farmer and discourages farmer from planting a new batch of crops. Therefore poor transport system is a major problem of Nepalese agriculture.
Nepal is very rich in water resources but we are still facing irrigation problems because the resources have not been utilized properly. We have water resource but the fields are far form resources. The present system of irrigation facility is outdated. The proper water supply to the fields are not maintained. The lack of skill and knowledge for creating good irrigation scheme is also a problem. Hardly 20% of the total land under cultivation has good irrigation facilities. So the farmers have to depend highly on monsoon rain which is not timely and reliable. If utilized, the agricultural development in Nepal can be quick and efficient.
The solution measures of agriculture problems are:
Nepal is an agricultural country. Some parts of the country have good production of crops and some have not. My locality does not have good production of crops because:
a) I live in higher hilly range which has cold climate.
b) Here is no irrigation facility.
c) Because of steep surface fertile top soil is swept away.
d) My locality does not have transportation facility so we do not get the things required for agriculture like insecticides, pesticides, improved seeds, etc. in time.
Rice cultivation needs hot (27 degree) and wet (150-200 cm rainfall) climate. It needs leveled land where 15 cm water can be stored. Fertile alluvial soil is needed for good rice cultivation. But all these geographical conditions are not available in Humla and Jumla. These districts have cold climate. It rains less here. The surface is sloppy where there is no facility of irrigation, improved seeds and fertilizers. Soil is also less fertile. So, Humla and Jumla produce very less rice.
The advantages of animal husbandry are:
The problems of agriculture in our country are:
Agriculture in a region depends a lot on the climate, topography and other environmental factors present in that region. Based on such conditions, the suitable type of crops can be determined and cultivated. So, it is clear that certain crops can only be grown in that conditions as permitted by the environment. Nepal is an agricultural country. Due to the different topography and different environment, different crops are cultivated. Terai is rich in agricultural products like paddy, wheat, lentils, etc. At the same time, cash crops like jute, sugarcane, tobacco and tea are grown in large areas of Terai.
Hill areas are suitable for maize, millet, fruits, tea and paddy mainly in the valley. This region has to import food stuff from Terai, so it is called food deflect region. Himalayan region, on the other hand, does not produce anything except some potatoes, fruits like apples, apricots and some millet. This region is known as extremely food deflect region.
The main occupation in the Himalayan is grazing animals. Above 3300m and below 5000m, in the Himalayan region of Nepal, the climatic condition is extremely cold. Therefore, tall trees cannot grow there. So the vegetation in this region consists of mainly grass and bushes. Grasses, become dominant in higher parts while bushes become numerous in the lower parts above the timber line. This grassland in the Himalayan region is called the Alpine grassland. Grasses are short but nutritious for sheep, goat, horse and yaks. So, large number of cattle is reared in this region. The alpine pasture is considered to be idle for sheep farming. The people living here can get more benefit from pasturing than other occupation.