There is over four times as many tones of cabbage produced worldwide compared to cauliflower and broccoli. Cabbage production – as a result of increasing population needs and changing diets – has risen by 20% over the five years between 2000 and 2005.
The biggest cabbage producer is China, with nearly 50% of world production. India, Russia and Korea all grow over 3 million tonnes and are followed by Ukraine, Japan and Indonesia.
20 million tonnes of cauliflower and broccoli are produced worldwide every year from 1.6 million hectares. China and India are the biggest producers at 8.9 and 6.7 million tonnes/year respectively – representing 74% of world production. They are followed by Spain, Mexico, Italy, France, USA, Poland, Pakistan and Egypt, all of whom produce over 0.2 million tonnes/year.
Due to the potential benefits of brassicas for human health and the increased awareness of consumers about the role of the diet on disease prevention, the consumption of vegetable brassicas will increase. While specific figures are more difficult to find, emerging, fast-developing nations such as China, have seen per capita consumption of all vegetables rise to over 300kg – well above the world average of 105kg. It can be assumed that cabbage constitutes a significant proportion of this.