Define primary activities with examples

An economic activity where there is direct dependence on the environment through usage of earth’s resources such as minerals, water, land, vegetation, building materials is known as primary activity.

Economic activities are human activities which generate income. Economic activity can be classified into different groups which are given below:

  1. Primary activity
  2. Secondary activity
  3. Tertiary activity
  4. Quaternary activity

Primary Activity

Various examples of primary activity are given below

  • Mining and quarrying
  • Agriculture
  • Fishing
  • Forestry
  • Hunting and Gathering
  • Pastoral activities


  • The industrial revolution resulted in The actual development of mining and its importance is ever increasing.
  • There are two type of mining which depends on the nature of the ore and mode of occurrence – Underground mining and Surface Mining
  • open-cast mining is the other name of surface mining.
  • Open cast mining or surface mining is used when the minerals are close to the surface of the earth, it is also the cheapest way of mining.
  • Underground mining method (shaft method) is used, when the ore lies deep below the surface.
  • Underground mining methods are risky due to fires, poisonous gases, caving in of the roof, possibility of floods etc.


Based on socio-economic and physical conditions, nine different types of agriculture systems exists, which are given below:

Subsistence Agriculture

  1. Subsistence agriculture is one in which the farming areas consume all, or nearly so, of the products locally grown.
  2. There are two types of subsistence agriculture – Intensive subsistence agriculture and primitive subsistence agriculture.
  3. Primitive subsistence agriculture – This type of agriculture is widely practised by many tribes South East Asia, Central and South America.
  4. Intensive Subsistence Agriculture – This type of agriculture is mostly carried out in monsoon Asia where the regions are densely populated.
  5. Intensive subsistence agriculture are of two types – one is dominated by crops other than paddy and in other type of intensive subsistence agriculture wet paddy is the dominating crop. 

Dairy Farming

  1. It is highly capital intensive.
  2. Dairy is the most efficient and advanced type of rearing of milch animals. Great emphasis is placed on cattle breeding, milching machines, storage facilities for fodder, animal sheds etc.

Mixed Farming

  1. Crop rotation and intercropping play an important role in mixed farming.
  2. This type of farming is practiced more in highly developed countries located in North America, Europe etc.

Plantation Agriculture

  1. Important Plantation crops are coffee, tea, rubber, oil palm, cocoa, cotton, pineapples, bananas, and sugarcane.

Market Gardening and Horticulture

  1. These types of farms are small and are located close to urban areas and where there is good transportation facilities.
  2. It specializes in cultivation of high value crops such as flowers, vegetables and fruits.

Mediterranean Agriculture

  1. This type of agriculture is practiced in Europe, south and south western parts of Australia, southern California, south western parts of South Africa , in north Africa from Tunisia to the Atlantic coast, and central Chile.

Collective Farming 

  1. To boost agricultural production and self-sufficiency, the Kolkoz or collective farming model was introduced in the former Soviet Union.
  2. Collective labour, social ownership is the principle behind cooperative farming.


  1. This is a speciality of Mediterranean region.
  2. It is also known as grape cultivation.
  3. The best quality wines are produced from grapes of these regions.

Cooperative Farming

  1. This type of farming is very successful in European countries like Denmark, Netherlands, Italy, Sweden, Belgium etc.
  2. Co-operative society is formed by a group of farmers for more profitable and efficient farming.
  3. The pooling of resources is voluntary, co-operative societies will help farmers process quality products, sell products, and help in procurement of inputs for farming.

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