Farming, Ranching & Gardening in Most-Developed Countries

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  • 0:03 Agriculture
  • 0:31 Most-Developed Countries
  • 1:03 Intensive Agriculture
  • 1:59 Gardening & Mixed Crops
  • 3:15 Ranching
  • 3:43 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Jessica Whittemore

Jessica has taught junior high history and college seminar courses. She has a master's degree in education.

This lesson will seek to explain agriculture in the modernized world. In doing so, it will highlight most-developed countries as well as intensive agriculture, gardening, and ranching.


Today's lesson on agriculture in most-developed countries will be rather familiar to most of us. In it, we will focus on farming, ranching, and gardening. For starters, agriculture is defined as the practice of farming, including cultivation of the soil for the growing of crops and the raising of animals to provide food and other products. In other words, agriculture doesn't just involve a farmer planting neat rows of corn. It also includes a cattleman raising steer or a dairy farmer milking his cows.

Most-Developed Countries

With the definition of agriculture under our belts, let's define what we mean by a 'most-developed country.' A most-developed country is a nation that has a highly advanced economy and a highly developed technological infrastructure. Putting it into other terms, most-developed countries are often referred to as first world countries. Places like the United States and much of Western Europe would fall under the label of 'most-developed countries,' or, as we'll call them for most of the lesson, MDCs for short.

Intensive Agriculture

When speaking of agriculture, MDCs practice intensive agriculture, signifying food production that employs permanent cultivation of fields, made possible by the use of more modernized tools. With this in mind, most-developed countries' agricultural economies are based in commercialization, producing for a market, making one dependent on the buying and selling of goods. Stated simply, farmers in MDCs aren't just planting crops to fill their own pantries. They are farming for monetary gain.

This commercialization has also led to most MDCs having thriving agribusinesses. An agribusiness is a corporately-owned landholding, farmed and operated by large companies. Living in the Northeastern US, my area is full of agribusinesses. For instance, I live rather close to one of the nation's largest apple producing agribusinesses.

Gardening & Mixed Crops

People living in MDCs also take part in gardening. Being very, very familiar to most of us, gardening is officially defined as tending and cultivating vegetation, especially as a pastime. Now, for this one, the last part of the definition is the most important part for our lesson: in MDCs, gardening is usually a pastime or a hobby; it plays no part in a person's or a family's actual survival.

This is in direct contrast to some third world countries in which cultivation is a matter of life and death. For instance, this past summer my kids and I planted a garden. Yes, the cherry tomatoes were very yummy and the melons were really cool to watch grow, but unbelievably fortunately for my family, none of these veggies made the difference in whether or not we had food on our table.

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