Cash crop

agricultural crop grown to sell for profit

A cash crop is a crop that is grown to be sold on the market. This is different from a subsistence crop which is grown for the personal use of the farmer, or as food for the farmer's animals.

Pepper is a common cash crop

There are several different categories of cash crops, for different purposes.[1]

Food crops are grown to be eaten by humans or animals. Since modern agriculture(farming) methods allow farmers to grow much more food than they need to feed themselves and their families, the extra is sold to others.

Some food crops include:

Apples, a food crop.

Spices and Herbs


Spices and herbs are ingredients added to food in order to make it taste less bland. Spices and herbs do not make up much of a meal but are very flavorful. Since spices and herbs are used in small amounts but can be grown in much larger quantities, the surplus grown is sold as a cash crop.

Some spices/herbs include:[2]

Cinnamon, a spice crop.



Material crops are plants which have parts that can be used as raw materials to create objects with. Material crops are not eaten, but sold to the market for usage for various purposes.

Some material crops include:[3]



Medicinal and drug crops are grown for their effects on the human or animal body. Medicinal crops can help with healing, relieving pain, and curing illness. Some medicinal crops can be used to substitute for sugars. Drug crops are crops that are used for recreational purposes and often have addicting effects.

Some medicinal crops include:[4]

Cannabis Sativa, or Marijuana, a crop that is both a drug and medicinal.

Some drug crops include:



Ornamental plants are crops grown and sold for the purpose of making a place look more attractive. These include flowers, though they can be any plant that decorates an indoor or outdoor space. Ornamental crops are frequently used in gardens, parks, and public places.

A farm where flowers are grown for commercial purposes.

Some decorative crops include:


  1. "20+ Highly Profitable Cash Crop Plants To Grow". 99Businessideas. 2015-10-26. Retrieved 2017-10-27.
  2. "Spicing things up: 10 common kitchen spices and how to use them | The Daily Californian". The Daily Californian. 2014-04-07. Archived from the original on 2017-11-06. Retrieved 2017-10-27.
  3. Products, National Research Council (US) Committee on Biobased Industrial (2000). Raw Material Resource Base. National Academies Press (US).
  4. "20 Most Profitable Medicinal Herbs Growing With Small Investment". Archived from the original on 2017-11-02. Retrieved 2017-10-27.
  5. "Plant list ordered by common name with pictures from Vitoria Garden". Retrieved 2017-10-27.