Most agriculture land under traditional ownership

September 9, 2021

More than half of the entire land in Fiji, or 54.1per cent of the total agricultural land (194,768.6 ha) is under traditional ownership, i.e. Mataqali, Tokatoka, Yavusa, or Kovukovu.

This is one of the key findings of the 2020 Fiji Agriculture Census Volume 1 Report.

The report stated following traditional ownership, 23.7per cent was under Native Lease, 13.9per cent under Freehold, 6per cent under State lease, and 2.1per cent under informal arrangement.

Only a miniscule proportion, 0.2% of area is operated without any legal arrangement or other such arrangement.”

The highest proportion, 65per cent of households, have agricultural land that is less than 1 hectare, followed by 21per cent with land area from more than 1 to 3 hectares, 6.2per cent from more than 3 to 5 hectares, 4.4per cent from more than 5 to 10 hectares, 2per cent between more than 10 to 20 hectares, and 0.9per cent between 20 to 50 hectares.

In terms of households that have agriculture land, the Census Report state that households with up to 5 hectares of agriculture land account for more than 92.2per cent of total agricultural households in the country.

The remaining two sizes of farms, more than 50 to 100 hectares, and 100 hectares or more, the Report stated, account for less than 0.5per cent of households each.

In relation to farm land by the number of years used, the Report stated, the highest proportion of 73.1per cent of operated farming was under use of the current farmer for more than eight years, while the lowest proportion of 11.7per cent was utilized for four to eight years.

The operated area under the use of the current farmer for a period of up to 4 years accounts for 15.2%, 2 to 4 years for 7.6%, more than 4 years to 8 years for 11.7% and more than 8 years for 73.1%.”

With respect to total area of farm land by land-use type (hectare), the Report stated, during the agriculture census reference year, 22.8per cent was used by temporary crops, 6.4per cent was fallow for one year or more, 14.3per cent was under permanent crops with no pastures, 17.5per cent under permanent crops with pastures, 10.3per cent under temporary meadows and pastures, 14per cent under permanent meadows and pastures, and 14.8per cent under uses other than those described.