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Economy, Agriculture

Subsistence farmers, Maize production, Cattle ranching, important products, cassava

With a well-developed commercial sector, agriculture remains one of the keys to Zimbabwe’s economic prosperity. In 2000 agriculture (including forestry and fishing) accounted for 18 percent of GDP. The country’s main commercial products are tobacco, sugar, grain, cotton, and coffee. Citrus fruit, cut flowers, and wine are smaller but still important products. Cattle ranching is important in the southwest. Subsistence farmers grow maize, cassava, and beans, and raise goats, sheep, and cattle.

Tobacco is the most important product of Zimbabwe, accounting for 51 percent of total export value in 1997. Both the Virginia and burley strains of tobacco are produced. Cotton rose in importance during the years of economic sanctions and has become a major export crop. Maize production depends on rainfall, but Zimbabwe has the capacity to produce about twice its own consumption needs. The production of sugar, citrus fruit, grapes, and cut flowers depends on irrigation from dams.

Article key phrases:

Subsistence farmers, Maize production, Cattle ranching, important products, cassava, dams, citrus fruit, grapes, rainfall, beans, maize, irrigation, flowers, tobacco, cotton, keys, sugar, Virginia, fishing, grain, agriculture, wine, accounting, capacity, importance


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