Agricultural Productivity

The Agricultural Total Factor Productivity (ATFP) data contains information on two measures of agricultural-production performance: (1) total factor productivity (TFP), the ratio between total output (crop and livestock products) to total production inputs (land, labor, capital, and materials), and (2) partial factor productivity (PFP), such as labor and land productivity.

Brazil and China have sustained high TFP growth during the past two decades. In other words, they were able to get more output from production input. Southeast Asia, West Asia, North Africa, and Latin America and the Caribbean also demonstrated accelerated TFP growth during the last decade. The major exception is Africa south of the Sahara, where TFP growth has remained below 1 percent per year. Rapid growth in Africa stems largely from farmer cultivation of new land as well as from greater use of fertilizers. This situation points to greater potential for Africa to accelerate its growth and transform its agricultural sector through an increase in agricultural productivity.


Output values are FAO-constructed gross agricultural outputs, each of which is a composite of 190 crop and livestock commodities aggregated using a constant set of global average prices from 2004–2006.

Inputs include agricultural land (sum hectares of both cropland and permanent pasture), labor (number of economically active persons in agriculture), livestock (total number of main species weighted to account for differences in body sizes), machinery (total number of tractors in use), and fertilizer (tons of fertilizer nutrients used).

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