Demand for Wheat Growing in Sub-Saharan Africa
2012-10-15 23:36:36

From VOA Learning English, this is the AGRICULTURE REPORT in Special English.(1)

Agricultural experts met in Ethiopia last week to discuss ways to help sub-Saharan Africa become a major producer of wheat. The area traditionally produced little wheat.(2)

Currently, maize -- or corn -- is the top cereal crop in countries south of the Sahara. In North Africa, wheat is the most important crop.(3)
目前,玉米 — — 或玉米--是在撒哈拉沙漠以南国家顶级谷类作物。在北非,小麦是最重要的作物。

Wheat production fell sharply in sub-Saharan countries during the nineteen eighties.(4)

Hans Joachim Braun is director of the Global Wheat Program of the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center.(5)
汉斯约阿希姆 · 布劳恩是全球小麦项目国际玉米和小麦改良中心主任。

“Wheat was always a commodity crop in North Africa. North Africa was the grain basket for the Roman Empire.(6)

And wheat production and domestication started in North Africa, Turkey, Iraq. So for traditional reasons, wheat was always there.”(7)
小麦生产和驯化开始在北非、 土耳其、 伊拉克。那么传统的原因,小麦却总是。"

In the nineteen sixties, attempts were made to grow wheat in sub-Saharan Africa, including South Africa and Zimbabwe.(8)

But those countries found it was less costly to import wheat from Europe and the United States.(9)

Another problem is that Africa’s wheat farms were often far from population centers. There also were transportation issues. And some lowlands were not a good place to grow wheat.(10)

Hans Joachim Braun says now is a good time to increase wheat production.(11)
汉斯约阿希姆 · 布劳恩说,现在是提高小麦生产的好时机。

“In the last four years we have seen three major price hikes, where the wheat price and other staple process exploded.(12)

And that puts a big, big bill on countries which are depending on wheat imports, and Africa is the biggest wheat importer.”(13)

He also says demand for wheat in sub-Saharan Africa is growing faster than for any other crop. There are two main reasons for that.(14)
他又说: 需求为撒哈拉以南非洲地区的小麦生长速度更快,要比任何其他作物。有两个主要原因。

“With higher income people would like to have more diversified food. But that is possible not the most important one.(15)

The most important one is that there is a tremendous migration of in particular male labor to the cities. And wheat products are convenient food because you can easily buy it.(16)

It’s easy to process and you also can store it for a few days, which is different from some of the maize and rice products.”(17)

There are three possible challenges for growing more wheat in Africa: climate change, disease and pests, like insects.(18)
有三种可能的挑战,在非洲更多小麦生长: 气候变化、 疾病和虫害,喜欢昆虫。

Mr. Braun says rising temperatures should not have a major effect on wheat. In fact, he says, it could help wheat grow in areas with high rainfall totals.(19)

As for fighting disease and pests, experts suggest growing more resistant crops.(20)

In addition, railroads and roads would have to be improved so large amounts of wheat could be moved to large markets.(21)

The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center estimates that sub-Saharan Africa will import forty million tons of wheat this year. Those imports are expected to cost eighteen billion dollars.(22)
国际玉米和小麦改良中心估计,撒哈拉以南非洲今年将进口 4000 万吨的小麦。预计这些进口成本 180 亿美金。

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