Handbook on Agriculture, Biotechnology and Development
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Handbook on Agriculture, Biotechnology and Development

Edited by Stuart J. Smyth, Peter W.B. Phillips and David Castle

This book is a compendium of knowledge, experience and insight on agriculture, biotechnology and development. Beginning with an account of GM crop adoptions and attitudes towards them, the book assesses numerous crucial processes, concluding with detailed insights into GM products. Drawing on expert perspectives of leading authors from 57 different institutions in 16 countries, it provides a unique, global overview of agbiotech following 20 years of adoption. Many consider GM crops the most rapid agricultural innovation adopted in the history of agriculture. This book provides insights as to why the adoption has occurred globally at such a rapid rate.
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Chapter 14: The Cuban context for agriculture and innovation

Carlos G. Borroto


Cuba is an archipelago located in the Caribbean Sea, with a total area of 110 860 km2, making it the seventeenth largest island in the world by land area. The main island of Cuba constitutes most of the nation’s land area. Terrain is mostly flat to rolling plains, with rugged hills and mountains in the south-east. The lowest point is at sea level and the highest point is Pico Turquino at 1974 m, which is part of the Sierra Maestra mountain range, located in the south-east of the island. According to the modified Köppen classification, the predominant climate of Cuba is mild-hot tropical with a rainy summer season. It has a high maritime influence. The country has an annual average rainfall of 1200 mm, with around 30 per cent of the precipitation in the winter period (November to April) and the remaining 70 per cent in the summer (May to October); in general rains are more abundant in the occident of the country than in the east. The average temperature is 23°C in January and 27°C in July. Cuba lies in the path of hurricanes, which are most common in September and October. During recent years, extreme weather conditions, as a consequence of global climate change, have been more common in Cuba. These changes involve longer drought periods, higher frequency of hurricanes and flooding and elevation of sea levels with associated saline intrusions. Cuba has approximately 11.2 million inhabitants, with 101 inhabitants per km2.

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