Everyone knows that farming is the process of growing crops or livestock for human consumption, but unless you grew up on one, there are probably a few things you do not know about running a farm:
Farms Are High Tech
If you still picture a farmer as someone who wears overalls and rides a rusty old tractor, you would probably be pretty shocked by the farmers of today. Many of today’s farmers are young, and as such, they use quite a bit of technology on their farms, including iPads, drones, laptops, and robots to make the job easier and more efficient.
Almost Every Farm is Specialized
The farms you read about in storybooks as a child are unfortunately almost gone. Farms used to be that way in the early 20th century, but now very few farms have a wide variety of crops or livestock. The reason behind this transition makes sense. Farmers began purchasing expensive, specialized equipment to run their farms in the latter half of the 20th century, so they wanted to make the most of those investments by focusing on their most successful pursuits.
Farming Requires a Family
Even if it is your idea to start a farm, it is impossible to operate it by yourself. Farming requires the daily efforts of multiple people. For some people, this may be their biological family, comprised of spouses and children. For others, this may be a family formed around the farm, including neighbors, friends, employees, and customers.
Operating a Farm is Dangerous
Farming is consistently ranked as one of the most dangerous professions–and for good reason! The nature of farming itself makes it dangerous because most farms do not have adequate cell service. If an accident were to happen, getting help in a timely manner would be very difficult. Additionally, farmers routinely work with equipment and animals that can cause serious injury or death, so they have to be extremely careful while performing their daily duties.
Farming is Hard Work
Most farmers report working ten to fifteen hours a day on their farm with no days off. From sunup to sundown, there is work to be done, and unless a farmer has hired some farm hands, they have to perform most of those tasks themselves. Farmers also rarely (if ever) take vacations because operating a farm requires constant supervision from an expert.
Soil Health Greatly Affects Farm Value
A farm’s value depends on the health of its soil because if the soil lacks the necessary nutrients, the crops grown in it will suffer in both quality and quantity. Farmers have to do their research and take great care to make sure they are using the best practices that will ensure the health of their soil down the road.