This study is aimed at outlining the policies and issues of crop diversification that are likely to influence the growth and sustainabi1ity of agricultura1 production in Bangladesh. Crop agriculture currently accounts for more than one-fourth of the gross domestic product (GDP) at market prices and nearly 60 percent of the commodity production in the economy. The crop sector is dominated by rice, which alone now accounts for nearly 70 percent of the gross farm revenue from crop production. For the nearly two decades under review (1973-90), the growth in crop agriculture has been predominantly 1ed by foodgrains, mostly rice. As the country now appears to be approaching self-sufficiency in rice, questions have been raised about the sustainability of rice-led agricultural growth (see, for example, World Bank 1991). The success in accelerating rice production may have thus brought new challenges and opportunities to make agriculture more efficient and more flexible. It is in this context that the issue of crop diversification needs to be addressed as part of the broader agricultural development strategy.
International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)