Agriculture in Paraguay’s Gran Chaco – March 23rd, 2009
The Gran Chaco is located west of the Paraguay River and east of the Andes, mostly an aluvial sedimentary plain shared between Paraguay, Bolivia and Argentina.
It is about 647,500 km2 (250,001 sq mi) in size, though estimates differ. The area visible here is located entirely in Paraguay.
The areas more hospitable to development are along the Paraguay, Bermejo and Pilcomayo Rivers.
The Chaco offers high soil fertility and a topography that is favorable for agricultural development, but in combination with aspects that are challenging for farming: A semi-arid to semi-humid climate (600-1300mm anual rainfall) with a 6 month dry season and sufficient sweet ground water available only in roughly one third of the region.
Many rectangular fields are visible in the light brown area upon which the close-up is focused. Several Mennonite colonies are located here, and the area has been deforested and developed for agriculture and cattle grazing. The most important produce includes cotton, peanuts, beef, milk and other dairy products.