Drylands are generally subject to climate regimes that are not highly favorable to crop production. Low total rainfall and high variability in rainfall patterns present difficult challenges for growing crops. Nevertheless, local populations depend on these lands for producing food.
Map description (Map 13)
In a spatial analysis of food production data for Latin America, the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) developed nutrient balance maps for the major Latin America and the Caribbean cereals: wheat, rice, maize, and sorghum. These maps were aggregated to one soil nutrient balance map for lands under cereals and combined with information on cereal yield trends for the years 1975 through 1995. A final map was created that superimposed the yield trend and nutrient balance maps to arrive at a soil fertility map of potential trouble spots and bright spots. In Map 13, we have clipped the IFPRI map to show only drylands of Latin America. On this map, potential bright spots are defined as stable or increasing yields with positive or only slightly negative nutrient balances (0 to