Ten facts about agriculture
How many people does a farmer feed? To what extent is German agriculture organic? These facts will help you shine in any discussions on the topic.
1. Large areas
Half of the area of Germany is used for agricultural purposes. Almost one million people produce goods worth more than 50 billion euros per year.
2. High yield
After World War II, a farmer in Germany was able to feed ten people. Today, thanks to scientific and technological progress, the figure has risen to 142 people.
3. Strong exports
Germany is the world’s third largest exporter of agricultural goods. The German agricultural industry exports about one third of its products.
4. High milk production
Germany is the largest milk producer in the European Union. The milk is processed almost exclusively in domestic dairies to make drinking milk, butter, yoghurt, cheese and other dairy products.
5. A lot of grain
Grain is grown on about one third of Germany’s agricultural land. Wheat is by far the leading crop, followed by barley and rye.
6. Less fruit and vegetables
Germany’s agricultural output covers only a third of demand for vegetables, and only one fifth of demand for fruit. Potatoes are the exception, where supply exceeds demand.
7. Very few greenhouses
Vegetables are traditionally grown in fields or gardens. Only about one per cent of Germany’s vegetable growing areas are covered by greenhouses.
8. 10 per cent organic
More than 10 per cent of all agricultural holdings are dedicated to organic farming. Organic farmers’ output is usually lower, but their revenue is higher.
9. Expensive wine
The sales value of German wine production is 1.1 billion euros, the equivalent of the world’s largest wine growing country, Spain. But Spain’s wine growing area is about ten times larger than Germany’s.
10. Sought-after hops
The largest single hop growing area in Germany, the Hallertau, accounts for about one third of world output. Germany is the world’s fourth largest beer producer.
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