Potential for Vegetable Production Towards Food Security in Arabian Peninsula: A Case Study of Oman
Mouza R. Al Salmi1, *, Saleem K. Nadaf2, Msafiri D. Mbaga1, Rhonda R. Janke3, Walid M.S. Al-Busaidi3
1 Department of Natural Resource Economics, College of Agriculture and Marine Sciences, Sultan Qaboos University, Al-Khod, Muscat, Oman
2 Plant Genetic Resources Gene bank, Oman Animal and Plant Genetic Resources Center, The Research Council, Sultan Qaboos University Campus, Al-Khod, Muscat, Oman
3 Department of Crop Sciences, College of Agriculture and Marine Sciences, Sultan Qaboos University, Al-Khod, Muscat, Oman
In Oman, the weather is not conducive to year-round cultivation of vegetables. However, these are dual-purpose commodities because they can be grown to achieve food security goals as well as serve as cash crops that generate employment and income. Increasing vegetable production in Oman has the potential to contribute to the government’s economic diversification efforts. Technical efficiency analysis for selected crops indicated the ability to improve crops’ production with the present state of technology in-line with regional food security objectives.
Materials and Methods:
Relevant documents about cultivating vegetables in terms of area, production, price structure, and other factors were extensively researched, analyzed, and presented in tables and figures to show their present and future trends. Researchers surveyed about 118 randomly selected farms across Oman. They also evaluated Technical Efficiency (TE) using a Trans-Logarithmic function (TL) and Cobb Douglas (CD) function with SHAZAM comprehensive economics and statistics package to achieve meaningful results.
The results include retrospective analysis of area and production of different vegetables cultivated in Oman and their import and export, their price, and its potential increase in vegetable production in Oman for economic diversification in domestic consumption and export markets. They also identified trends in organic vegetable cultivation, and sales showed the potential to increase production levels and assist government efforts to increase agriculture’s contribution to the gross domestic product of Oman. Technical efficiency for tomato in selected samples indicated the ability to improve production beyond 20% with the present state of technology.
Analysis of data on ordinary vegetable cultivation established that the outlook for global vegetable supply and demand is attractive. The global demand for vegetables, is increasing and will continue to do so. Moreover, growth is especially strong in demand for organic vegetables in wealthier countries such as Switzerland, Sweden, and the United Arab Emirates. Technical efficiency analysis indicated a potential increase in the production of vegetables with the present state of technology.
Keywords: Food security, Global demand and supply, Organic and inorganic vegetable farming, Price fluctuations, Production estimates, Technical efficiency.
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* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Natural Resource Economics, College of Agriculture and Marine Sciences, Sultan Qaboos University, Al-Khod, Muscat, Oman; Tel: +96899810121; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org