EGYPT – Egypt targets to produce 12 million tons of wheat this year from about 4 million feddans (about 1.68 million hectares), Reda Mohamed, the Director of the Field Crops Research Institute and Head of the National Campaign to Preserve Wheat has said.

Mohammed in a televised speech further revealed the country’s ambition to raise production to meet 65-70% of local needs from the current 55% by 2030.

Egypt has one of the highest per capita consumption of wheat in the world. At 180kg, the country’s per capita is almost thrice the global average.

With such a huge appetite, Egypt is forced to rely on imports as local wheat production, despite being the highest in Africa, is unable to meet demand estimated at 18.5MT per year.

The Russo-Ukraine war has however impacted imports as Egypt relied on both Ukraine and Russia for over 80% of its total import needs.

Mohammed revealed that the strategy to raise local production is in line with  President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi’s interest in expanding the cultivation of strategic crops, especially wheat

Egypt has already scored success in increasing the land cultivated with wheat to 3,650,000 feddans in 2023, with an annual increase of 250,000 feddans, according to Mohammed.

In addition, Mohammed stressed that attaining this is possible through the expansion of land reclamation of the giant national projects in eastern Owainat, Toshka which the president launched as part of the state’s efforts to achieve an integrated development boom

In addition, the state is poised to maximize productivity by developing new seed varieties capable of adapting to modern irrigation methods and climatic conditions and increasing the number of pilot fields to 7000 fields in all villages to educate farmers about proper agricultural practices.

Strategic wheat and commodity reserves

Meanwhile, the minister of Supply and Internal Trade Ali el Moselhi has revealed that Egypt’s strategic wheat reserve is sufficient for 4.6 months, adding that local wheat supplies will start in mid-April with a target of 4 million tons.

The minister was speaking on the fringe of his participation at the inauguration of the Cairo Food Summit in its first edition.

The minister further noted that the country’s cooking oil reserves are enough for 5.1 months while rice reserves are enough for the Egyptian market consumption, noting that rice mills are being reviewed to control prices at markets.

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