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Country has 8.26m farms on 53m acres

September 30, 2012

ISLAMABAD, Sept 29: An agricultural census survey reveals that the country has a total of 8.26 million farms on an area of 52.91 million acres.

The average size of farm in the country was 6.4 acres whereas the cultivated area per farm was 5.2 acres.

The distribution of farm area among small and large farms is highly skewed, and the new data published by the Statistics Division shows that farmlands of 25 acres and above comprise only 4 per cent of the total number of farms in the country. However, they command 35 per cent of the total farm area.

The Agricultural Census Survey 2010 released by the Federal Bureau of Statistics says that farms with less than 5 acres of land constitute 64 per cent of the total private farms, but they operate on only 19 per cent of the total farm area.

The report, prepared in conjunction with the programme laid down by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), portrays developments made in the agriculture sector since the last Agricultural Census in 2000 and provides basis for future planning.

According to the census report, privately managed farms were mostly cultivated by 82 per cent of owner cultivators, followed by tenants (11 per cent) and by owner-cum-tenants (7 per cent), 7.58 million acres (14 per cent) and tenants 5.89 million acres (11 per cent).

The census data indicate that owners and owner-cum-tenants operated an area of 39.43 million acres and 3.10 million acres respectively, accounting for 42.53 million acres in total.

Whereas, the remaining 10.38 million acres were operated by tenants either on share-cropping, lease or on undefined- terms of tenancy.

In this way, 80 per cent of the total farm area was operated by owners and 20 per cent by tenants.

The census report says that land use intensity in the country was 83 per cent on the average.

It was highest ((3 per cent) in the Punjab and lowest (45 per cent) in Balochistan. It was 86 per cent in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa followed by Sindh 79 per cent. The intensity of land use was higher for tenant operated farms being 85 per cent while it was 84 per cent for owner farms.

Land use intensity was the lowest at 77 per cent for owner-cum-tenant farms.

The overall cropping intensity in the country was 159 per cent; highest in the Punjab at 167 per cent and the lowest in Balochistan at only 102 per cent. Cropping intensity in Sindh was 162 per cent followed by Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa at 156 per cent.

The intensity of cropping was 159 per cent for owner farms as well as for owner-cum-tenant farms and 160 per cent for tenant farms.

Of the total cropped area of 67.91 acres, wheat alone occupied 42 per cent, followed by cotton and rice 14 per cent each, fodder 9 per cent, pulses 5 per cent, maize and sugarcane 4 per cent each, jawar/bajra, oilseeds an orchards 2 per cent each.

The area reported under wheat in the country was 28.23 million acres, under rice 9.36 million acres, under cotton 9.23 million acres, under sugarcane 2.63 million acres and under maize 2.39 million acres.

This was actual area sown under the crop, unlike harvested area including the area on which crop had failed.

Of the total of 8.26 million farms, 3.35 million farms (41 per cent) reported use of fertilisers only, while another 2.45 million farms (20 per cent) reported use of both fertilisers and manures.

The use of insecticides had been reported by 2.75 million farms, representing 33 per cent of the total farms in the country.

Of the total, 7.88 million farms (95 per cent) reported cultivated area at their farms at the country level, amongst them 6.04 million farms (77 per cent) had reported use of tractors only for cultivation of land, covering an area of 37 million acres — 77 per cent of the total farm area.

There were another 1.55 million farms (20 per cent) reporting use of both tractor and animals for cultivation, covering an area of 9.93 million acres.

The use of bullocks/other animals for cultivation of land had been reported only by 0.29 million farms (3 per cent), covering an area of 1.28 million acres – 3 per cent of the total farm area.