2.4.2 - Food production

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Humans ultimately depend on plants for food:

Humans rely on plants for food because they are the start of all food chains. Plants use the energy from sunlight to convert carbon dioxide and water into complex organic compounds (such as carbohydrates). Humans and other animals eat, digest and absorb the compounds, which they use for energy and to grow. We grow plants for direct consumption and to feed animals, which we then eat. Many modern farming methods aim to maximise productivity by increasing plant and animal growth

  • Fertilisers- Chemicals that increase crop yields by providing minerals (such as nitrate, phosphate and potassium) that plants need to grow. Minerals in the soil are used up during crop growth. Fertilisers replace these minerals so that a lack of minerals doesn't limit growth of the next crop. Fertilisers can be natural or artificial. 
  • Pesticides- Chemicals that increase crop yields by killing pests that feed on the crops. This means fewer plants are damaged or destroyed. Pests include micro

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