Intensive farming

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This is in contrast to many sorts of sustainable agriculture such as organic farming or extensive agriculture, which involve a relatively low input of labour, relative to the area of land farmed, and which focus on maintaining long-term ecological health of farmland, so that it can be farmed indefinitely.

Modern day forms of intensive crop based agriculture involve the use of mechanical ploughing, chemical fertilizers, plant growth regulators and/or pesticides. It is associated with the increasing use of agricultural mechanization, which have enabled a substantial increase in production, yet have also dramatically increased environmental pollution by increasing erosion and poisoning water with agricultural chemicals.

Intensive animal farming practices can involve very large numbers of animals raised on limited land which require large amounts of food, water and medical inputs (required to keep the animals healthy in cramped conditions).[1] Very large or confined indoor intensive livestock operations (particularly descriptive of common US farming practices) are often referred to as Factory farming[2][3][4] and are criticised by opponents for the low level of animal welfare standards[4][5] and associated pollution and health issues.[6][7]


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