Secondary Industry
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Basic Information

Secondary industry describes those enterprises that process the products of primary industry for more advanced use - this would include timber milling, metal smelting, tanning and similar things, but also includes some food production such as milling, dairy work and meat processing. Some of these processes are final stage (especially in food production), but most feed into tertiary or higher tiers.

These are likely to be practiced on a commercial scale and village level and above but some can also be found at craft scale pretty much universally - the classic example being wool spinning, which was the traditional occupation of pretty much all women until industrial spinning became the norm.


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Game and Story Use

  • World builders should determine which secondary industries are practiced in given communities - in the pre-modern world many will appear at a craft level, but only a few will be commercial and these will typically be linked to whatever the primary industries are in the local area.
    • For example, a mining village might well smelt the ore that it mines and ship ingots, whereas a grain-growing village would probably only mill for its own consumption and export wholewheat. Flax is probably an excellent example for a material traditionally processed at source. In the modern era, many vegetables are processed as close to "the field" as possible for freshness.
  • Note that the output of an industry can be used at various stages, for example a flour mill can either sell its product as flour (final stage) or passed on to a bakery (tertiary industry). The same with a timber mill - the timber can be used as is (say, as pit props or for construction) or processed into other wood products in further industry.
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