The simple answer is that old habits die hard and the corporations that produce most of the world’s food are slow to change processes that have rewarded them with large profits, even if those profits can not be continued long into the future.
The more complicated answer is that sustainable agriculture is difficult because many of the agricultural processes used by large conventional farms are designed to produce high yield crops, maximize profits by getting the most out of the land in the most cost-effective way.
Sustainable agriculture has three main issues that prevent wider implementation: Ecology/Technology, Global Market Structures, and Land Availability.
The first issue is deciding which technologies to implement to produce quality food sustainably at a reasonable price.
The second is implementing governmental and worldwide (through the IMF and similar organizations) strategies to promote and render cost effective farming methods that allow for continued productivity.
The third is allowing small farmers access to land much more easily obtained by large farms with vast amounts of capital so that they can take the time and energy required to sustain their efforts.
Unsustainable agriculture (increasing yields from genetic modifications, etc.) is more profitable and more convenient than sustainable agriculture, and is very much ingrained in food production. Usage of chemicals, machines, and other methods to maximize production result in topsoil depletion and contamination. There’s an immense pressure, though, to produce enough food to satisfy world hunger — until our methods of sustainable agriculture improve and the third world becomes more peaceful, there will be a mutually exclusive balance between producing enough food and producing it sustainably.
It is not difficult at all, on tiny scales, such as a single family group. It is impossible on useful large scales for the reasons given in the other answers.
It is so because we have not adopted. It requires some technical know-how unlike the traditional methods that have been used over the years. For instance the use of compost or farm yard manure as against the use of artificial fertilizer is still seen as double punishment. It is bulkier to transport these to the farms and very cumbersome. The desired result is usually slow compared to the use of inorganic fertilizer.
Another is the use of native hoes as against the use of tractor-driven plough which compacts the soil and denatures its original structure
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