4 Industries that Depend on Madagascar

Besides the name of the animated movie, have you ever heard of Madagascar?

Do you know where it is?

As an island nation situated in the Indian Ocean off the eastern shore of Africa, Madagascar actively contributes to the global economy and is well known for several specific exports.

Madagascar is mainly known for exporting vanilla, nickel and gold, knit textiles, and even a small market share of therapeutic oils.

These exports make significant contributions in the industries of cooking, clothing, and design, jewelry, metallurgy, and even alternative health practices.

Spices and Aromatics

Madagascar’s number one export is vanilla, as well as other spices and aromatics.

Did you know that approximately 30% of Madagascar’s exports stem from agriculture?

To get specific, these exports break down to around 18% vanilla, 6.9% cloves, 1.9% dried legumes, and the remaining percentage is comprised of pepper, other spices, and vegetables.

These products contribute directly to the culinary and baking industries, as culinary artists worldwide use them to add aromatic qualities to both fine dining and decadent desserts.

And check this out:

Fragrant spices like vanilla and cloves can be used in various ways – not just in food.

For example, they can be used to produce fragrances in perfumes, candles, and aromatic oils.


Next to vanilla, spices, and aromatics, Madagascar’s second-largest export is clothing.

Clothing makes up almost 20% of Madagascar’s total exports.

Clothing items such as knit sweaters, suits for men and women, scarves, activewear, and baby clothing, as well as other textiles, make a large contribution to the international clothing market.

Where the Heck is Brunei?

Many of these materials are used to stock shelves and provide inventory for European vendors and clothing distributors.

Precious Metal

Madagascar is also well known for its exports of nickel, gold, and even cobalt.

These metals constitute almost an additional 20% of Madagascar’s exports.

Nickel, in particular, appears in several industries, as it is a metal often alloyed with steel.

Nickel and nickel alloys are used to make machinery, construction materials, and they are also used to create essential household items like stainless steel silverware, light fixtures, faucets, and even doorknobs.

While nickel is not as commonly desired in jewelry, gold certainly is.

Gold from Madagascar can be molded into everyday jewelry items like rings, earrings, necklaces, and bracelets in addition to other decorative adornments and accessories.

Essential Oils

Finally, in addition to the previously-mentioned spices, Madagascar is well-known for contributing essential oils to the global market. These make up approximately 2% of Madagascar’s exports.

Essential oils have gained a lot of popularity recently, especially in the fields of holistic health and therapy. Their beneficial physical and psychological effects are being studied by scientists more and more, and new data is being compiled that make them even more appealing.

Essential oils from Madagascar include concentrated extracts of clove bud, eucalyptus, niaouli, ravintsara, and vanilla.

One oil, in particular, is harvested by essential oil giant, doTERRA. doTERRA has made strides recently to properly compensate the workers in Madagascar who harvest ylang-ylang.

The therapeutic values of these products include (but are not limited to) supporting respiratory function, acting as insect repellants, supporting the immune system, relieving stress, improving mood, and other health benefits.

How Do Matches Work?

Many industries across the globe directly or indirectly benefit from Madagascar’s natural resources and local economies.

The culinary industry, the clothing industry, the jewelry and metallurgy industries, and the alternative health arena are the top four global sectors that heavily rely on Madagascar’s economy.


Madagascar Industry Sectors | Economy Watch

Madagascar Ylang-Ylang Video | doTERRA

The Biggest Industries In Madagascar | World Atlas

Madagascar – Agriculture | Nations Encyclopedia

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