The Bahamas - Agriculture
Agriculture is carried out on small plots throughout most of the islands. Only about 1% of the land area is cultivated. The nature of the terrain limits the scope of farming, which is mainly a household industry. The main crops are vegetables: onions, okra, and tomatoes, the last two raised mainly for export. Inadequate production has necessitated the import of some 80% of the islands' food supply. Among steps the government has taken to expand and improve agriculture is the reserving of 182,000 hectares (450,000 acres) exclusively for farming, 8,000 hectares (20,000 acres) of which were converted to fruit farming. Export-oriented orange, grapefruit, and cucumber production in Abaco grew as export demand expanded. However, on Eleuthera, most agricultural and fishing infrastructure was seriously damaged by Hurricane Andrew. Agricultural products in 1999 included 45,000 tons of sugar cane, 14,000 tons of grapefruit, and 22,000 tons of vegetables.