Crop

A crop is a plant or animal product that can be grown and harvested extensively for profit or subsistence.[1] Crops may refer either to the harvested parts or to the harvest in a more refined state. Most crops are cultivated in agriculture or aquaculture. A crop may include macroscopic fungus (e.g. mushrooms), or alga.

Domesticated plants

Most crops are harvested as food for humans or fodder for livestock. Some crops are gathered from the wild (including intensive gathering, e.g. ginseng).

Important non-food crops include horticulture, floriculture and industrial crops. Horticulture crops include plants used for other crops (e.g. fruit trees). Floriculture crops include bedding plants, houseplants, flowering garden and pot plants, cut cultivated greens, and cut flowers. Industrial crops are produced for clothing (fiber crops), biofuel (energy crops, algae fuel), or medicine (medicinal plants).

Important food crops

Crops drying in a home in Punjab, India.
World production of crops by commodity group[2]

The importance of a crop varies greatly by region. Globally, the following crops contribute most to human food supply (values of kcal/person/day for 2013 given in parentheses): rice (541 kcal), wheat (527 kcal), sugarcane and other sugar crops (200 kcal), maize (corn) (147 kcal), soybean oil (82 kcal), other vegetables (74 kcal), potatoes (64 kcal), palm oil (52 kcal), cassava (37 kcal), legume pulses (37 kcal), sunflowerseed oil (35 kcal), rape and mustard oil (34 kcal), other fruits, (31 kcal), sorghum (28 kcal), millet (27 kcal), groundnuts (25 kcal), beans (23 kcal), sweet potatoes (22 kcal), bananas (21 kcal), various nuts (16 kcal), soybeans (14 kcal), cottonseed oil (13 kcal), groundnut oil (13 kcal), yams (13 kcal).[3] Note that many of the globally apparently minor crops are regionally very important. For example, in Africa, roots & tubers dominate with 421 kcal/person/day, and sorghum and millet contribute 135 kcal and 90 kcal, respectively.[3]

World production of crops, main commodities[4]

In terms of produced weight, the following crops are the most important ones (global production in thousand metric tonnes):[5]

Crop20002013
Sugarcane 1,256,3801,877,110
Maize 592,4791,016,740
Rice 599,355745,710
Wheat 585,691713,183
Potato 327,600368,096

See also

  • General topics and economics
    • List of most valuable crops and livestock products
    • Cash crop
    • Catch crop
    • Crop cultivation
    • Crop yield
    • Industrial crop
    • Intensive crop farming
    • Intercropping
    • Multiple cropping
    • Permanent crop
    • Neglected and underutilized crop
    • Sharecropping
    • Staple food
    • Nursery plants
    • Fruit trees
  • Floriculture crops
  • Guerrilla gardening
  • Management practices
    • Cover crop
    • Crop destruction
    • Crop residue
    • Crop rotation
    • Crop weed
    • Kharif crops (crops specific to South Asia)
    • Nurse crop
    • Rabi crops (crops specific to South Asia)
  • Genetic diversity
    • Crop diversity
    • Crop wild relative (CWR)
    • Seed bank
  • Origin
    • Neolithic founder crops

References

  1. "Definition of CROP". www.merriam-webster.com. Retrieved June 20, 2017.
  2. World Food and Agriculture – Statistical Yearbook 2020. Rome: FAO. 2020. ISBN 978-92-5-133394-5.
  3. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Statistics Division (2017). "FAOstats Food Supply - Crops Primary Equivalent".
  4. World Food and Agriculture – Statistical Yearbook 2020. Rome: FAO. 2020. ISBN 978-92-5-133394-5.
  5. FAO 2015. FAO Statistical Pocketbook 2015, ISBN 978-92-5-108802-9, p. 28

Further reading

  • Sleper, David A.; Poehlman, John M. (2006). Breeding Field Crops. Blackwell Publishing. ISBN 9780813824284. Retrieved December 5, 2011.
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