Macedonia produces a wide range of crops and other foodstuffs. Farmers grow rice, tobacco, wheat, corn, millet, cotton, sesame, mulberry leaves, citrus, and vegetables; beef, pork, poultry, mutton, and dairy products are also produced, and the country has traditionally been an exporter of sugar beets, fruits, vegetables, cheese, lamb, and tobacco. As elsewhere in the former Yugoslavia, farmland was only partly collectivized under communist rule, while in other eastern European countries such as Bulgaria, collectivization was almost complete (collectivization was the process by which communist countries coordinated production through state planning). The farming sector has, however, been hit by drought, and the wheat harvest was down by 16 percent in 2000.
The government has come under pressure from private farmers, who have threatened to organize protests unless it pays what it owes them for the 1999 harvest and compensates them for the rising price of fuel. They have also demanded subsidies for their agricultural exports and a cut in the rate of the new value-added tax for agricultural products from 19 percent to 5 percent.