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Pineapple harvesting, Ivory Coast
Yann ARTHUS-BERTRAND

Art Photography by Yann ARTHUS-BERTRAND, pineapple harvesting, Abidjan, Ivory Coast. 10 years ago, the Ivory Coast was the main exporter of fresh pineapple to the European Union.

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Orientation Landscape
Color Green

Pineapple harvesting, Ivory Coast

Yann ARTHUS-BERTRAND

Art Photography by Yann ARTHUS-BERTRAND, pineapple harvesting, Abidjan, Ivory Coast. 10 years ago, the Ivory Coast was the main exporter of fresh pineapple to the European Union.

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10 years ago, the Ivory Coast was the main exporter of fresh pineapple to the European Union. Production went from 231 000 tons in 1999 to 73 000 tons in 2007 and it now exports three times less. Though this sector has been in a crisis for a long time, it was amplified by the latent civil war which weakened the country in 2002. Firstly, because of road blockades but especially, because farmable land played an important part in the conflict's genesis. Indeed, Ivorians strongly resented immigrants, mostly Burkinabés and Malians who represented over 30% of the population, for making money out of their land. In the Bonoua region, immigrants were even enjoined to give up pineapple farming, the area's main resource. In addition to the political crisis that shook the Ivory Coast, West African countries had to face competition from industrial plantations in Latin America that now dominate the European market. The latter, encouraged by the American company Del Monte, have developed pineapple varieties that can be produced faster and can better withstand transport. In 2005, the European Union also increased its demands in regard to the traceability and chemical residue levels of the fruits and vegetables it imports.

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