South Africa is separated into a large number of farming regions according to climate, natural vegetation, soil variety and also farming practices. The agriculture in South Africa is dual in nature as here both commercial farming as well as subsistence-based production takes place. The commercial farming is generally a well developed one and subsistence-based production is less developed comparatively.
Let us know what commercial and subsistence farming are?
First of all, Subsistence Farming:
In subsistence farming the farmers do farming to make their livelihood which means they produce crops and breed animals to feed their families and self and clothes for them. So it is a self based farming which gives almost zero income to the farmer as they do not go for marketing these products. It is just a self sufficiency farming which provides no profit. It is mostly followed in developing countries and deep rural areas.
Now Commercial Farming:
It is large scale farming for the production of crops for sale to wholesalers or retail outlets. It is totally income based farming. In commercial farming crops like wheat, maize, tea, coffee, sugarcane, cashew, rubber, banana, cotton are produced and sold as wholesale agricultural products in markets worldwide. Crops like tea, coffee, sugarcane, cashew, rubber, banana, cotton are called cash crops as they provide cash in return. Commercial Farming has become well developed as it is in a great demand.
The farming is not only limited to agricultural fields also the marine production plays a great role in South Africa. There is a cultivation of a diverse range of marine products like finfish and shellfish e.g. prawn, or oysters and seaweed in saltwater ponds. Non-food products produced by marine agriculture include fish meal, nutrient agar, jewelry like pearls, and cosmetics.
About 13% of the land in South Africa is used for crop production and 22% of this land is high potential arable land. The factor that affects the crop production the most is scarcity of rainfall. As the rainfall is less in these regions the farming is completely dependent on the irrigation system. Almost about 50% of the water in South Africa is used for agricultural purpose.
Presently, South Africa is not only a self satisfactory agricultural producer but also it is a leading food exporter. Hence agriculture plays a vital role in the economical development of South Africa. The government here is completely in favor of farming and is trying to develop small scale farming for creating jobs and boost up the employment.
Today many exporting companies like M&B Trading Pty. have came forward for wholesale agricultural supplies and have made it easier for the people to reach them and also they add a lot to the South Africa’s economy.