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Saudi Arabia expanded fruit production in the last six years

Saudi fruit production
A Saudi woman buys dates during Unaizah Season for Dates, at Unaizah city in Al-Qassim province, Saudi Arabia August 10, 2021. Picture taken August 10, 2021. REUTERS/Ahmed Yosri

Saudi Arabia has expanded fruit production over the past six years by 194%.

Fruit production rose to 2.7 million tons at the end of 2020, compared to 930 thousand tons during the previous six years, Saudi data indicated.

The data issued by the Saudi Ministry of Commerce indicated that dates were at the forefront of the list of these products, as the Kingdom ranked second in the world in production of dates with 1.5 million tons in 2020.

Saudi fruit production

Its exports reached 107 countries and grew by 7.1%, amounting to 927 million riyals ($247 million).

Statistics indicate that the average consumption of fruits and vegetables in the Kingdom has reached 77 kilograms per capita annually.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture aims for the per capita share of fruits to reach 90 kilograms, and his share of vegetables to 100 kilograms annually, equivalent to approximately 250 grams per day.

It is noteworthy that the list of fruits produced by the Kingdom includes dates of all kinds, pomegranates, grapes, watermelon, cantaloupe, mango, strawberries, bananas, apples, oranges, apricots, and peaches.

The Saudi government seeks, within the framework of the objectives of the kingdom’s Vision 2030, to provide a food security environment, which includes supporting the movement of agricultural production, facilitating the contribution of the private sector, and opening up areas of innovation and development in green fields.

In a related context, a recent study revealed shocking numbers of food waste and loss in Saudi Arabia.

The study said that the amount of 40.4 billion riyals ($10.77 billion) is the cost of wasting annual production on the basis of consumer spending in Saudi Arabia.

It also indicated that this waste amounts to about 4.06 million tons, at a rate of up to 33.1% annually, while the per capita share contributes about 184 kilograms of food waste.

The study, prepared by the General Organization for Grains, confirmed that the waste in vegetables exceeds 335,000 tons annually.

In a related context, the study showed that wastage and loss in flour and bread amounted to 917,000 tons annually, while 557,000 tons of rice and 22,000 tons of sheep meat were wasted.

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