Agriculture is the most important sector of the Senegalese economy, as evidenced by the high share of agriculture in the employment structure of the population (almost 30%), despite the fact that only a small part of the territory is suitable for agriculture.

Moreover, agricultural production accounts for 15.3% of GDP. Limited opportunities for agriculture due to the location of most of the country in the arid Sahel region lead to insufficient production of agricultural products, which makes Senegal dependent on food imports. Constraints to development include the lack of modern equipment and technologies, as well as vulnerability to climate threats.

In 2021, 3,535.8 thousand tons of grain were produced in Senegal, which is 2.9% less than in 2020, while the indicator increased by 40.5% compared to 2017. The main crops grown in the country are rice, millet and corn. Rice production in 2021 amounted to 1,382.1 thousand tons, which is 2.4% more than in 2020. The average growth for 2017-2021 was 8.1% per year.

Rice production is mainly concentrated in the southern regions of the country on the border with Guinea-Bissau, where higher rainfall levels allow farming without the use of irrigation systems, which are poorly developed in Senegal. Despite the fact that rice is the main crop in the structure of grain consumption in the country, its production volumes satisfy less than half of the demand, most of the consumption is provided by imports. The second most important grain crop is millet, the production of which in 2021 amounted to 1,039,9 thousand. tons, which is 9.2% less than 2020, while the volume of grown products increased by 18.8% compared to 2017. Also in 2021, 754.6 thousand tons of corn were produced, which is 1.0% less than 2020, but 18.8% more than 2017.

The production of vegetables, root crops and tubers in 2021 amounted to 2,724.1 thousand tons, which is 1.7% more than 2020. On average, in 2017-2021, the volume of grown products increased by 11.6% per year, due to a significant increase in cassava production. So, in 2021, 1,328.9 thousand tons of this crop were grown, which is 1.3% less than in 2020, but compared to 2017, the indicator increased by 88.5%. The growth of cassava production is facilitated by the interest of the Senegalese government in increasing yields, as this crop is considered as the most promising for increasing the profitability of the agricultural sector and strengthening the country's food security.

The production of fruits and berries in 2021 amounted to 1,930.3 thousand tons, which is 3.4% less than in 2020. Most of the grown products are watermelons, the production of which in 2021 amounted to 1,611.2 thousand tons (-4.0% by 2020).

The main crop grown in Senegal is peanuts. In 2021, 1,677.8 thousand tons were produced, which is 6.7% less than in 2020. However, compared to 2017, volumes increased by 19.4%. A significant part of Senegalese peanuts is exported. The main buyer is China.

Sugar cane production in 2021 amounted to 1,386.3 thousand tons, which is 0.5% more than 2020. The average annual growth rate for 2017-2021 was 0.6%.

The livestock sector plays an important role in the country's economy, a significant part of rural residents are engaged in meat and dairy cattle breeding. The development of the sector in question is perceived as a priority for further reducing poverty and improving the well-being of the country's population. However, the existing production facilities are not able to meet domestic demand.

Milk production in 2021 amounted to 248.9 thousand tons, which is 0.6% more than in 2020. The basis of dairy cattle breeding is cow's milk, of which 222.2 thousand tons were produced in 2021, which is 0.7% more than in 2020. The country also produces goat and sheep milk (14.0 thousand tons and 12.1 thousand tons in 2021, respectively) The production of meat and offal in 2021 increased by 4.7% and amounted to 384.4 thousand tons. The first place in the structure is occupied by poultry meat, the production of which in 2021 amounted to 133.3 thousand tons (+9.4% by 2020). Beef production in 2021 Reached 88.9 thousand . tons, mutton — 42.1 thousand tons. The average annual growth rates for 2017-2021 of poultry, beef and lamb were 8.8%, 4.2% and 1.8%, respectively. Also, in Senegal, 0.77 billion pieces of chicken eggs were produced in 2021, which is 35.3% less than in 2020.

Fishing in Senegal is the most important segment of the country's economy, which makes a significant contribution to GDP, and fish products are a key export position. In terms of production, Senegal is among the regional leaders. In 2021, the figure was 469.2 thousand tons, which is 3.6% more than in 2020. Aquaculture in the country is poorly developed, and almost all production is carried out by fishing. According to the USDA, about 80% of production comes from local fishermen, while large-scale commercial fishing accounts for only about 20% of production and is mainly aimed at export.

Import of agricultural products

By the end of 2022, Senegal imported $2.3 billion worth of agricultural products, which was a record figure for the last 5 years. The volume of imports of agricultural products in 2022 exceeded the indicator of 2021 by 25.9%. The average annual growth rate of imports of agricultural products of the country for the period under review was 7.5%.

The largest share of supplies in the value structure of imports of agricultural products of Senegal by the end of 2022 fell on rice (24.2%), wheat (16.6%) and malt extract, other food products from flour, cereals, starch, milk (8.0%). In total, the above items accounted for 48.8% of the value of imports of agricultural products of the country or 1,121.9 million US dollars. The top 10 imported types of products accounted for 72.5% of the value of imports of agricultural products from Senegal.

The main volume of imported products in 2022 fell on cereals — US$ 1,085.2 million (47.2% of the country's value imports). In 2022, there was a decrease in imports of palm oil (-9.4%), frozen fish (-5.8%) and fresh bulbous vegetables (-12.5%); the remaining positions from the top 10 imported products showed growth. The largest increase in 2022 was demonstrated by wheat (+47.0%), rice (+18.6%) and corn (2.3 times).

In 2022, the main suppliers of agricultural products to Senegal were India (15.3% of the value of imports of agricultural products of Senegal), Argentina (13.2%) and France (12.3%). Russia took the fifth place in the list of suppliers, exporting products, according to ITC Trade Map, in the amount of 104.5 million US dollars. The share of the top 10 countries accounted for 69.8% of the value of Senegal's imports.
The largest increase in exports of agricultural products was demonstrated by Argentina (3.2 times), France (+30.9%) and Thailand (+69.2%). Argentina increased exports of corn (by 2.8 times or by 88.7 million US dollars), wheat (by 4 times or by 67.6 million US dollars), cake and soybean meal (by 3 times or by 29.0 million US dollars) and resumed supplies of soybean oil, which in 2022 amounted to 23.6 million US dollars. France increased wheat supplies by 80.7% (46.3 million US dollars). Thailand, in turn, increased rice exports to Senegal by 61.9% (36.8 million US dollars).

Export of agricultural products

In 2022, the country's export volume reached 1.58 billion US dollars, an increase of 3.9% compared to 2021, becoming a record for 2018-2022. The average annual growth rate of value exports for the period under review was 7.4%.

Frozen fish (17.8%), shellfish (13.7%), as well as soups and broths (10.5%) formed the basis of the value export of agricultural products of Senegal. The top 10 exported types of products accounted for 75.3% of the value of exports of agricultural products of Senegal.

The main volume of products exported in 2022 fell on the category of fish and seafood — 606.6 million US dollars (38.5% of value exports). The export of shellfish has grown the most since 2021 — in 2022 it increased by 60.1% (by 81.0 million US dollars). The export of products and canned fish has also increased significantly (by 3.7 times or by 54.6 million US dollars).

Among the importing countries of agricultural products from Senegal in 2022, Mali took the main share of value exports (12.7%). China (10.9%) and Ivory Coast (9.6%) also entered the top 3. In total, the top 10 countries accounted for 71.0% of Senegal's agricultural exports in 2022.

A significant increase in the volume of purchases of agricultural products from Senegal in 2022 was shown by the Republic of Korea (by 3.7 times or by 70.3 million US dollars) and the United States (by 7.3 times or by 48.4 million US dollars). In 2022, South Korea purchased 27.5 times (by 76.0 million US dollars) more shellfish. The United States increased imports of fish and canned goods (by 7.9 times or by 47.8 million US dollars). At the same time, in 2022, the export of agricultural products from Senegal to China decreased by 38.0% (105.1 million US dollars) compared to 2021. The reason was a decrease in the supply of peanuts by 51.1% or 126.1 million US dollars.