Production Status, Marketing and Risks of some Major Fruits and Vegetable Production in Ethiopia. A Review

Merga Boru


Ethiopia is well known for its diversity of indigenous food plants, including vegetables. The cultivated vegetables are mainly grown by traditional farmers in home gardens, although some are grown in fields and along field margins. About 27% of the crop species cultivated in home gardens in Ethiopia, many of them indigenous, are used as vegetables. Vegetable production plays important role in poverty alleviation through employment generation, improving the feeding behaviour of the people, and creating new opportunities for poor farmers. Since the labour to land ratio of vegetable cultivation is high, vegetable products are bulky and perishable, and vegetable has continuous demand in the market, its production and marketing allows high productive employment. Increasing horticultural production and marketing thus contribute to commercialization of the rural economy and create many off-farm job. Ethiopia mainly due to cereal based food habit is


practicing and largely affects children’s in most part of the country. Many research reports indicated that an estimated five million people are suffering from lack of vitamins and essential minerals. A deficiency problem in Ethiopia especially for children’s rest on increasing the availability of vitamin. In general 60 to 80 % of health problems in Ethiopia are due communicable diseases and nutritional problems. Ethiopia has got an immense potential to develop intensive vegetable production especially at commercial scale. In general, the drawback to this sector include social and cultural habits of the population like dietary preferences for meat and other animal products, and distaste for vegetable crops, lack of consumer awareness, economic reasons of the local consumers, absence of nutrition intervention programme using vegetables. The vegetable industry could benefit from tapping the potential of the indigenous taxa as this would improve local and national food security, augment farmers' incomes and help surmount some health problems associated with nutrient deficiency.

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