Jewish agricultural settlement since the 1880’s can be characterized by two unique features: the urban, educated people settled and became farmers of their own free will; and the agricultural settlement was carefully planned, first on the farm unit level, and later on the regional and national levels. On both of these the Israeli experience is unique in that each is the reverse of the usual process observable elsewhere. During the twelve years following the attain¬ment of statehood in 1948 Israel absorbed successfully over 1.25 million immi¬grants into agriculture, over two-thirds of whom had none or limited degree of familiarity with the “modern” agriculture, as they came from North Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. Nonetheless, they became part of a highly technical and organized farming system. Between 1950 and 1965, total agricultural pro¬duction in Israel increased by 500 per cent. The productivity of labour in agri-/. culture rose at a remarkable annual rate of 10.8 per cent between 1955 and 1959 and at 11.2 per cent between 1958 and 1963.