Madagascar - Agriculture



Madagascar Agriculture 1283
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Although Madagascar's economy is essentially agricultural, much of the land is unsuitable for cultivation because of its mountainous terrain, extensive laterization, and inadequate or irregular rainfall. Only about 5% of the land area is cultivated at any one time. Despite these figures, agriculture accounts for 30% of GDP and employs about 75% of the work force. Large-scale plantations dominate the production of sisal, sugarcane, tobacco, bananas, and cotton, but, overall, Malagasy agriculture is dependent mainly on small-scale subsistence farmers cultivating less thanoneha (2.47 acres) of land.

A wide variety of food crops is grown. Rice is the staple of the Malagasy diet; production was an estimated 2,637,000 tons in 1999. Nevertheless, the yield is insufficient to meet the country's needs and in 1982, 1984, and 1990 cyclones severely damaged the rice crop. Cassava, bananas, and sweet potatoes are also important. Madagascar has sought to diversify staple crop production by promoting maize and potatoes. Other important food crops (with 1999 production figures) include cassava, 2,435,000 tons; sugarcane, 2,180,000 tons; sweet potatoes, 520,000 tons; potatoes, 285,000 tons; bananas, 265,000 tons; corn, 181,000 tons; and oranges, 85,000 tons.

The major Malagasy export is coffee. In the 1980s, coffee regularly earned about 24% of total export revenues. After the collapse of the International Coffee Organization in 1989, however, coffee exports accounted for only 8.6% of Malagasy foreign trade earnings in 1992 (down from 35% in 1985); in 2001, it accounted for about 12% of exports. Production was 85,000 tons in 1991 and about 65,000 tons in 1999.

Vanilla is the second-ranking agricultural export, with exports of 853 tons of extract (for a value of $9.5 million) in 2001. International trade in natural vanilla is determined by agreements between producers (mainly Madagascar and the Comoros) and the principal importers by which export prices and traded volumes are fixed. The government does not encourage overproduction, since the international market demand is very sensitive because of competition from synthetic vanilla (vanillin). Madagascar is the world's major natural vanilla producer, accounting for about 75% of production.

Cloves are the third main export crop, grown mostly by smallholders. Production follows a 4-year cycle with 2–3 years of high output followed by one year of low production. Clove exports totaled 16,723 tons in 2001, valued at $88.5 million. Other 1999 production figures for cash crops were seed cotton, 33,000 tons; peanuts, 34,000 tons; sisal, 18,000 tons; and cocoa, 4,000 tons. Pepper is another important export crop. Pepper exports in 2001 amounted to 635 tons, valued at $1.2 million. The sugar sector has been revived with the help of French investments. The needs of the domestic market are served by five sugar refineries.

Production of cash crops has been discouraged by the low prices paid by state agencies, which sometimes have failed to collect crops or pay for them on time. In 2001, Madagascar's agricultural trade surplus was $21.5 million.

Also read article about Madagascar from Wikipedia

User Contributions:

1
tori Yates
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May 10, 2007 @ 11:11 am
this is a great site keep up the great work from tori Yates.
2
QT
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May 30, 2007 @ 5:17 pm
i luv this page it saved my life(well, my homework)they should make more websites like these.=)
3
Krystal
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Aug 6, 2007 @ 3:03 am
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Jp95
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Nov 1, 2007 @ 8:20 pm
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shannon
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May 7, 2008 @ 9:09 am
this page is helping me majorly with a huge project!! people need to make more pages like these. =]
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MBeringer
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May 9, 2008 @ 9:09 am
i agree with the people that said this website saved their lives...well it did save me for my homework...it gave me alot of info for a speech i had to give in front of the class...keep up the good work
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KCris
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May 22, 2008 @ 6:18 pm
it helped me with a huge project that I had to do I am now so close to being done thank you
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May 23, 2010 @ 6:18 pm
great help, really useful!!!really helped me with my project, and gave me a better understanding of madagascar economy. keep it coming!
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Nov 9, 2010 @ 8:08 am
this is some really usefull stuff! i know that if i ever have a nother project to go here first. its the best site i seen so far. not to sound like ive been commeting on a lot of stuff. but i can reaallly see that the comments arnt woth much but i hope the is. it really helped me with my afican scapbook.
10
SJM
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Jan 9, 2011 @ 11:23 pm
this is an awesome website and it saved my homework. they really need more websites like this
11
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Jan 16, 2011 @ 7:07 am
I want to know more about the agriculture in MADAGASKAR. Also I want to know about the types of Visas of the country.
12
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Oct 25, 2011 @ 7:07 am
please kindly mail me more information on agriculture business in madagascar.
also inform me how to get visa to visit madagacar. Also keen to now about fishing industry in madagascar.i am a sri lankan.

Thanks
laknath
13
cameron
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Dec 7, 2011 @ 4:16 pm
this website is awesome it helped me with my social studies project
14
eric
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Jan 17, 2012 @ 5:17 pm
Great article! It saved my life for a social studies project on madagascar and has great info thanks dude!
15
Sally
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Feb 16, 2012 @ 6:18 pm
This I a totally great site I am doing my world's fair on madagascar and this helped me a lot!!! THANK YOU!!!
16
Tifftoff
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Mar 7, 2012 @ 9:21 pm
Really good website helped with a project that I have
17
guttabeenmobbin
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Dec 12, 2013 @ 1:13 pm
good web page, very helpful. not really what i was looking for but close enough. overall great page.
18
Scarlett-rose
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Jun 29, 2014 @ 4:16 pm
This is an amazing website like what many others said it helped with a project I am doing. Very helpful not exactly what I was looking for but definitely great.Been researching for ages found some great websites but this definitely the best. I really appreciate you
19
Lauryo
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Jan 21, 2015 @ 8:20 pm
Vanilla is not listed as an important food crop, but it is the second-ranking agricultural export, so how important is vanilla to the Malagasy economy??
20
Bob
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Aug 24, 2018 @ 6:18 pm
This information was so helpful :)
it answered all my questions
thanks
21
g
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Jan 28, 2019 @ 3:15 pm
Who is the author of this article? I would really like to know.

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