Explain why Mussolini launched the 'Battle for Wheat' in 1925.

Mussolini launched the Battle for Wheat in 1925 with the aim of increasing the production of wheat and raised the import duties on wheat to attain self-sufficiency in wheat. By 1935, wheat imports reduced by 75% and Italy was on the verge of attaining self-sufficiency in wheat. This success was achieved at the cost dairy and arable farming. As compared to north Italy, south was not suitable for production of wheat. Instead of growing orchards and grazing the wheat was produced. This made agriculture inefficient and labour wages fell by 20-40% by 1930s. The cost of consumer goods increased and the attempt at self-sufficiency became a failure.


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