While the total value of export merchandise fell in 1990 and 1991 and had still not recovered in 1993 to its 1989 level, the overall agricultural sector output has grown somewhat because of growth in the sale of winter vegetables and shrimp. Nontraditional vegetables and fruit produced US$23.8 million in export revenue in 1990, a figure that was almost double the 1983 figure. Nontraditional agricultural crops represented 4.8 percent of the value of total exports in 1990, compared to 2.8 percent in 1983. Some development experts argue that government protection of corn, bean, and rice production by small farmers is a futile effort in the long-term goal of poverty reduction. On the other hand, they see significant economic potential for nontraditional crops, if they are handled properly. Analysts also note, however, that Honduras is at a distinct disadvantage relative to its Central American neighbors because of its poor transportation system. Nontraditional exports require the ability to get fresh produce from the fields to distant markets rapidly.
|Country Studies main page | Honduras Country Studies main page|