11 SEPTEMBER 2002

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Agricultural census reveals heavy fragmentation

The National Statistics Office has found through its 2001 Census of Agriculture that the distribution of agricultural land across the Islands is heavily fragmented.

According to the Census, the total agricultural area of the Maltese Islands stands at 10,013 hectares. The NSO said yesterday. Of the total, Malta accounts for 8,081 hectares while 1,932 hectares are located in Gozo.

The total agricultural land is managed by 11,887 agricultural holdings - 9,184 in Malta and 2,703 in Gozo. 606 holdings refer to pig, cattle and poultry farms and holdings consisting of garigue land (moxa) and as such, these have no agricultural land to speak of.

The NSO reports that the nature of the Island’s agricultural land area is very fragmented, with 73.5 per cent of agricultural holdings being made up of less than one hectare of land.

Meanwhile, 16 per cent is made up of between one and two hectares, nine per cent of between two and five hectares, while the remaining 1.5 per cent individually account for over five hectares of land area. 303 hectares of irrigated land (saqwi) lie in 1,245 holdings that measure less than one hectare a piece. On the other hand, 1,195 hectares of irrigated land are contained in 1,147 holdings.

 



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Editor: Saviour Balzan
The Business Times, Network House, Vjal ir-Rihan San Gwann SGN 07, Malta
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