Date-palms cultivation in Sudan goes back to as early as 4000 B.C. Sudan ranks eighth among the dates producing countries. The estimated number of date palm trees in the country is about eight million while annual date fruit production is approximately 320,000 tons, used for both local consumption and exportation. The majority of date palms are grown under the irrigated sector in northern Sudan where the environment is considered as suitable for their production. Palm dates contain vitamins, high calories content and other food ingredients rendering them as highly nutritious foods. With adequate investment, Sudan’s date palm plantations have the potential of enhancing development and economic growth. This research was carried out in Sudan’s main date-supplying area; namely the Northern Region. Its aim is to assess the situation of dates production and marketing, hindrances faced and how the dates sub-sector could be developed in the country, in particular, and in other producing countries in general. The study is based mainly on primary data collected using a structured questionnaire. Yet, secondary data is also utilized; having been collected from various relevant sources. The study unveiled numerous constraints affecting palm date production and marketing. These mainly comprise low crop yield, high cost of production along with inefficient use of agricultural resources, product price volatility, inadequate marketing infrastructure and high cost of marketing. The study concluded that date palm plantations could contribute directly to agricultural sustainability and alleviation of malnutrition in the region. However, cooperation between stockholders in the sector and intervention of the State are needed to address the constraints in dates production and marketing.
Keywords: Date palm; Production; Marketing; Sudan
Reference to this paper should be made as follows: Ahmed, E. A., Faki, H. H. M. and Ahmed, K. H. (2018) “Economics aspects and Palm dates development in Sudan”, Int. J. Sudan Research, Vol. 8, No. 2, pp.113-126.