By Alex Hitzemann
Although sub-Saharan Africa has the potential to produce more agricultural goods than the US and Europe combined, the economic and political structure have not allowed it to reach those levels… as of yet.
However, this week a shimmer of hope was discovered by an analyst pouring over 2013 ag data about sub-Saharan crop yields.
A 3 ton increase is a significant indicator of a green revolution. This data points to Côte D’Ivoire hitting a tipping point, where their agribusiness could go into overdrive. The Ivory Coast currently imports a vast majority of their food, which is detrimental to their economy. However, the hope lies in similar developing nations that have posted the similar figures before breaking into agricultural sustainability. One example of this is South Korea, which reached self-sustainability shortly meeting similar indicators. The data can be shown in the graph below;
— John McArthur (@mcarthur) May 4, 2015
After 1961, Korea’s grain yields began to rapidly grow until 2013. If this indicator holds true for Côte D’Ivoire, then we may have a full scale #GreenRevolution in Sub-Saharan Africa. The benefits would be outstanding. Since they would be able to share their practices and processes with neighboring sub-Saharan countries.
However, there are many other factors at play. So one would be wise to curb their enthusiasm. McArthur explains “Africa’s agricultural systems are extraordinarily diverse, so one country’s partial productivity measure provides cannot be overstated as captured trends across a vast continent’s diverse range of crop systems. Nonetheless, the recent Cote d’Ivoire yield observation is unprecedented, and thereby provides cautious grounds for broader hope. At least some African countries might well be entering a greenshoot revolution”in agriculture.” Of course, some of Côte D’Ivoire’s officials hit twitter with the exciting news today…
— CI Econ & Trade SA (@CI_Trade_SA) April 30, 2015