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The Potato Sector
A German immigrant is credited with introducing the potato to Ethiopia in 1858. Over the following decades, farmers in Ethiopia's highlands began cultivating the new tuber - known as denech - as an "insurance policy" against cereal crop failures.

Among African countries, Ethiopia has possibly the greatest potential for potato production: 70 percent of its arable land - mainly in highland areas above 1 500 m - is believed suitable for potato. Since the highlands are also home to almost 90 percent of Ethiopia's population, the potato could play a key role in ensuring national food security.

At present, potatoes are still widely regarded as a secondary crop, and annual per capita consumption is estimated at just 5 kg. However, potato growing is expanding steadily: FAO estimates that production has increased from 280 000 tonnes in 1993 to around 525 000 tonnes in 2007.

Agricultural Statistics Ethiopia

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Potato Production in 2017: 932,701.00 tonnes FAO data based on imputation methodology
Potato Yield in 2017: 137,993.00 hg/ha Calculated data
Potato Area Harvested in 2017: 67,591.00 ha FAO data based on imputation methodology
Sweet Potato Production in 2017: 2,008,290.00 tonnes FAO data based on imputation methodology
Sweet Potato Area Harvested in 2017: 246,503.00 ha FAO data based on imputation methodology
Sweet Potato Yield in 2017: 81,471.00 hg/ha Calculated data
Potato Production in 2016: 921,403.00 tonnes Official data

Consumption Statistics Ethiopia

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Item-consumption: translated
Sweet Potatoes, Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2013: 14.40 kg/capita/year Calculated data Sweet Potatoes
Potatoes (Fresh and Processed), Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2013: 6.65 kg/capita/year Calculated data Potatoes (Fresh and Processed)
Sweet Potatoes, Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2012: 12.92 kg/capita/year Calculated data Sweet Potatoes
Potatoes (Fresh and Processed), Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2012: 7.67 kg/capita/year Calculated data Potatoes (Fresh and Processed)
Sweet Potatoes, Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2011: 4.36 kg/capita/year Calculated data Sweet Potatoes
Potatoes (Fresh and Processed), Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2011: 3.81 kg/capita/year Calculated data Potatoes (Fresh and Processed)
Sweet Potatoes, Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2010: 8.45 kg/capita/year Calculated data Sweet Potatoes