Top 4 most produced cash crops in Africa
Agriculture is the single most important economic activity in Africa. It provides employment for about two-thirds of the continent’s working population. Each country contributes an average of 30 to 60 percent of high domestic products and about 30 percent of the value of exports.
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization Corporate Statistical Database (FAOSTAT), the continent is home to 60% of the world’s uncultivated arable land. Given the massive role of agriculture across the region, data from Visual Capitalist shows the Top four most produced cash crops in Africa.
1 . Firstly, CASSAVA
Cassavas are the first crop on the list. A total of 192.1M tones of cassava was produced in 2019. Cassava is the most produced cash crop by a wide margin. With nearly 200 million tonnes of it produced annually, Africa’s cassava production makes up a majority (63%) of the global total.
2 . Secondly, SUGAR CANE
Another on the list of the most produced cash crops in Africa is sugar cane. An estimated sum of 97.3M tones of sugar cane is produced yearly. Africa currently represents only 5% of its global production.
It is considered a critical region for continued expansion due to its high production potential, low cost, and proximity to European markets. Notably, the EU is the world’s second-largest consumer of sugar. It was the largest importer of sugar between 2008 and 2011.
3 . Also on the list is MAIZE
Tonnes of maize produced annually is about 81.9M. Maise is Africa’s most important cereal crop. It is also an important basic food for more than 1.2 billion people in SSA and Latin America.
Thus, several African countries depend on maize as an essential food crop and have adopted agricultural policies to maintain a steady supply of the commodity. As a result of this, they increase the production and productivity of the crop.
4 . Finally, YAMS
Yam tubers are largely produced and it is recognized as one of the cash crops in Africa. About 72.4M tones of yams and other tubers were produced in 2019. Africa’s yam production is 97% of the global total.
This covers Nigeria, Ghana, Benin, as well as Côte d’Ivoire. With over 60 million people across the yam belt directly or indirectly involved in its production. The cultivation of yam is an important component of the region’s economic growth.
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