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.
Landbouw Statistieken Ethiopië
Potato Production in 2017 :932701.00tonnesFAO data based on imputation methodology
Potato Yield in 2017 :137993.00hg/haCalculated data
Potato Area Harvested in 2017 :67591.00haFAO data based on imputation methodology
Sweet Potato Production in 2017 :2008290.00tonnesFAO data based on imputation methodology
Sweet Potato Area Harvested in 2017 :246503.00haFAO data based on imputation methodology
Sweet Potato Yield in 2017 :81471.00hg/haCalculated data
Potato Production in 2016 :921403.00tonnesOfficial data
Consumptie Statistiek Ethiopië
Sweet Potatoes , Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2013:14.40kg/capita/yearSweet Potatoes
Potatoes (Fresh and Processed) , Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2013:6.65kg/capita/yearPotatoes (Fresh and Processed)
Sweet Potatoes , Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2012:12.92kg/capita/yearSweet Potatoes
Potatoes (Fresh and Processed) , Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2012:7.67kg/capita/yearPotatoes (Fresh and Processed)
Sweet Potatoes , Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2011:4.36kg/capita/yearSweet Potatoes
Potatoes (Fresh and Processed) , Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2011:3.81kg/capita/yearPotatoes (Fresh and Processed)
Sweet Potatoes , Consumption (Crop Equivalent) in 2010:8.45kg/capita/yearSweet Potatoes
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