Italy is a producer and exporter of all types of crops, with it's reputation as a culinary hotbed directly linked to the quality of it's agricultural resources. Over 35% of the land is permanently dedicated to crop growing all year round but, despite this, Italy's agricultural sector has only seen relatively small growth over the past few decades. Much of Italy's crops are grown on small, individually owned farms with the average size of an Italian farm falling short of the 7.5 acre mark. Interestingly, Italy is home to nearly 1.5 million tractors- the third largest tractor population in the world!
The crop production of the country is representative of both the northern and southern trends of European agriculture, with the northern part of Italy dedicated primarily to the production of: Grains, sugar beets, meat, soybeans, and dairy products.
The south of the country is perhaps more agriculturally active and specializes in: Various fruits, olive oil, vegetables, wine, and durum wheat. Other less yielding crops grown in Italy range from barley to rice. Despite the Alpine mountain range cutting down the length of the country and restricting the amount of arable land, agriculture still represents 1.8% of Italian gross domestic product, and employs 4.2% of the national workforce