Agriculture changed little over the past 10,000 years in terms of human employment and effort until the technological and industrial revolutions that marked the 19th and 20th centuries. Until that time, the vast majority of people were engaged in food production. In time, enough surplus food allowed for non-food-producing activities as well. Mechanical innovations and, later, chemical creativity transformed agriculture into a multinational agribusiness supplying food for the masses, while private farming dwindled down to almost nothing. At the same time, increasing population growth, higher life expectancy, and greater affluence has ramped up the demand for food products. This chapter chronicles how the scientific community has responded to these challenges to move toward agricultural sustainability.