animal husbandry

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Bhutan's traditional economy is based on forestry, animal husbandry, and subsistence agriculture. However, these acount for less than 50% of the GDP now that Bhutan has become an exporter of hydroelectricity. Besides, cash crops and tourism are also significant.

I'd llike to make sure of the meanings of the underlined phrases. Would you describe them in a few words? Thanks.
  • GreenWhiteBlue

    Senior Member
    USA - English
    "Husbandry" comes from the ancient meaning of husband as "one who dwells in a house", specifically a peasant farmer. It later meant "a steward", and the verb to husband, which means to manage possessions carefully and with thrift, comes from that. Animal husbandry is the breeding and rearing of animals, especially as a source of livelihood. Someone who breeds horses for use as draft animals, or who breeds cattle as producers of milk or meat, or who raises chickens so that he may have eggs to sell, is a practicioner of animal husbandry.

    Subsistence agriculture is practiced by farmers who raise food primarily to feed themselves and their families rather than for other purposes (that is, they subsist on the crops that they raise.)

    Cash crops are items that are raised to be sold rather than eaten or used by the farmer and his family. Well-known cash crops include such things as coffee, tea, cotton, tobacco, and cacao. Farmers who raise such crops do not expect their families to eat tea leaves or cotton bolls; instead, they sell the crops for cash, and then purchase food from other sources.

    Harry Batt

    Senior Member
    USA English
    QD I am going to give you my answer off the cuff without claiming to have the precise definititions. A farmer who practices animal husbandry would be one who not only raises animals as product for sale, but also works to breed and improve the species. Subsistence farming is a fancy way to describe the diversified farmer who is self-sufficient. In the United States we call him the family farmer. Both ot these farmers are a vanishing breed because of overhead expenses and competition from single crop [cash crop] and animal feeder lots. Many other factors contribute to his loss on the rural scene.
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