Mentioning about Egypt, we are most often talking not about agriculture. Meanwhile, this industry provides about 12% of national GDP, estimated at about $ 250 billion.
Most of the country lies in the desert belt, which does not prevent Egypt from being the largest supplier of potatoes in the EU. Surprisingly, the Egyptians achieve high results with low use of resources - the average annual consumption of pesticides is much lower than the world average. How do they do that?
GROPRO Corp., an American manufacturer and supplier of biological plant protection products, recently completed an agricultural research trip to Egypt. In June, GROPRO released a report prepared by its experts following the trip, on the Potato News Today portal. Here are a few excerpts from it.
Turn deserts into fields
Egypt's agricultural region is mostly limited to the Nile Valley and the Nile Delta, with several oases and some arable land in the Sinai. All sown areas of Egypt are irrigated, with the exception of certain areas on the Mediterranean coast.
Due to the low quality of the Nile's water, the protection of crops grown in irrigated areas is one of the most important factors that guarantee and ensure an acceptable quality of the future crop (as well as the quantity of products) of all crops grown.
Most Egyptian agricultural land holdings cannot be called large: the size of the average farm is about 1 hectare. The total area of annually cultivated land in Egypt is about 4,83 million ha. The government is working on a major investment plan to increase the country's agricultural land by adding 1,2 million hectares as part of the land reclamation process in the south. Over the past four decades, an area of 370 hectares of new reclaimed land has been added to the agricultural base of Egypt.
Egypt turns deserts into agricultural fields through the intensive use of drip irrigation and modern agricultural technologies.
The annual production of fruits and vegetables in Egypt in 2018 amounted to about 35 million tons (FAO). Most farmers grow tomatoes, onions and potatoes. Egypt is a major exporter of ware potatoes.
Ware Potato Export
In 2018, Egypt exported more than 759 tons of ware potatoes and entered the top five exporting countries, supplying potatoes primarily to Russia and the EU. In 200, Egypt took 2019% of the world potato export market, Egyptian potato export in 5 amounted to 2019 million US dollars.
Egyptian potatoes are well known for their good quality, as they are grown in clay or sandy soil. Egyptian potatoes are also popular with buyers for their long-term storage ability. The export season for Egyptian potatoes lasts from mid-January to late May.
The use of biopesticides in agriculture in Egypt
Given the huge export volume of Egyptian crops to the EU, the issue of the quality of these products is becoming increasingly important. The European market has very strict rules that restrict the use of chemicals in food production.
At the same time, Egyptian manufacturers are not very actively using biopesticides, but GROPRO experts believe that this situation will change.