Similarities In the Criticisms of Industrial Agriculture Made by Michael Pollan, Wendell Berry, and Vandana Shiva and Their Visions of Better Farming

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With the continuous evolution of global industrialization and mechanization of agriculture since early 20th century, traditional farming that relied heavily on the labor of humans and animals has been gradually replaced by a modern form of capital intensive farming, considered more “efficient” through the application of science and engineering. Despite the fact that industrial agriculture has brought a rapid increase in world food production, it has also attracted criticisms and demands for a better form of agriculture. Michael Pollan, Wendell Berry, and Vandana Shiva, the three environmental activists, have all claimed in their essays and speech that, industrialized agriculture has negative impacts on our environment, farming economy, and the survival of traditional farmers. They all call for a better kind of agriculture that is more sustainable, resilient with natural biodiversity. Michael Pollan, Wendell Berry, and Vandana Shiva have all claimed that the massive use of chemical herbicide and fertilizer in industrial agriculture has contributed to the environmental degradation such as soil erosion and water pollution, as well as the adverse effects on agriculture. Pollan concludes, in “Mass Nature”, that the “cheap” industrial food does not count “costs charged to the environment, in the form of soil depletion and water pollution”. Similarly, Wendell Berry, in his “The Agrarian Standard”, said “the continuing unsustainably high soil erosion rates” has uncovered the fact “We continue to pollute our soils and streams agricultural poisons”. What’s worse, the rise of “super-pests” as the resistance to pesticides, has forced the farmers to use ever-stronger pesticides which have put the already vulnerable environment into an ... ... middle of paper ... .... Perf. Vandana Shiva and Drs. Mauro.Http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=swocVkwTEvo. N.p., 2013. Web. Pollan, Michael. "An Animals' Place." New York Times 10 Nov. 2002: n. pag. Http://michaelpollan.com/articles-archive/an-animals-place/. Web. Pollan, Michael. "Power Steer." New York Times 31 Mar. 2002: n. pag. Http://michaelpollan.com/articles-archive/power-steer/. Web. Pollan, Michael. "When a Crop Becomes King." New York Times 19 July 2002: n. pag. Http://michaelpollan.com/articles-archive/when-a-crop-becomes-king/. Web. Pollan, Michael. "When a Crop Becomes King." New York Times (2002): n. pag. Http://michaelpollan.com/articles-archive/when-a-crop-becomes-king/. Web. "Seeds of Freedom" Dir. Jess Phillimore. Perf. Vandana Shiva and Jeremy Irons. Http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-bK8X2s1kI. Gaia Foundation and the Africa Biodiversity Network, 13 June 2012. Web.

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