Bhutan’s plan to halt chili import if domestic production reaches self-sufficiency is facing a potential setback; recent data reveals a significant decline in chili harvests. According to the 2022 Integrated Agriculture and Livestock Census (IALC) report published by the National Statistics Bureau, the country’s total chili production in 2022 amounted to 5,557 tons, marking a steep drop compared to previous years.
Chili is a vital commercial crop and a staple vegetable in the daily diet across many areas. However, the 2022 harvest was 307 tons lower than the previous year, indicating a worrying downward trend. The decline in production can be attributed to a combination of reduced cultivated area and lower yields per acre, as outlined in the 2022IALC report.
Examining the trend between 2018 and 2022, the country’s chili production has experienced fluctuations.