PRODUCTION / CONSUMPTION

Dry seed legume production
in the world (2000)
Species
Total area
Production
(1)
%
(2)
%
Beans
24 138
35,62
17
31,40
Peas
6 048
8,93
11
19,75
Faba
beans
2 774
4,09
4
6,46
Lentils
3 793
5,60
3
6,21
Others
31 005
45,76
20
36,18
Total
67 758
100
55
100

(1) Thousands of hectare - (2) millionsof tons
Sources: Calculated from FAO data
 (2000)

Worldwide distribution (%) of
grain legumes seed production (2000)
  Total area
(%)
Production (mio T) Production (%)
Africa 26,15 8 14,64
North America 8,37 8 14,64
South America 7,77 4 7,32
Asia 49,6 26 46,85
Europe 5,33 7 13,38
Australasia 2,78 2 3,48
World 100 55 100
Sources: claculated from FAO data (2000)  

They have been despised in Europe over the last decades

In Mexico, red beans remains the basic food of many cooking preparations.

In Africa, legumes complement the lack of proteins of cereals, roots and tubers.

In Asia, fresh or preserved soybean is added to many dishes.

Though the double function (proteins and carbohydrates) of legumes is recognized and even if Europe has been a great producer of lentils, faba beans, and French beans, the consumption has steadily decreased in Europe for more than a century. As the living standard improves the consumption of animal proteins is getting higher, probably too high according to some specialists.

Soybean and groundnut have lipids contents and are therefore used for the preparation of vegetal oils.

 

CONSUMPTION

World consumption of the main dry legumes in kg/head/year (2000)
  Dry beans Dry peas Dry legumes
Africa 2,2 0,6 5,8
North America 5,5 0,4 7,5
South America 9,4 0,6 10,9
Asia 1,3 0,5 5,1
Europe 0,7 1,3 2,6
Australasia 0,3 1,9 3,4
World 2,2 0,6 5,8
(1992) - Sources: FAO (2000)

Legumes | World's food | Agropolis-Museum