FAO Inception Workshop on Dates Value Chain

05-02-2017 05:23 PM

Mary Fikry


 

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations Egypt office

has organised an inception workshop on a technical cooperation project to develop

the value chain of dates in Egypt. The workshop was organised to discuss the

project's general goals and outline, devise a detailed action plan, and learn lessons

from similar projects.

The workshop is part of the country’s Date Palm Strategy, launched in October

during the 2nd Egyptian Date Palm Festival at Siwa oasis. It was held in

cooperation with the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the Ministry of Agriculture

and Land Reclamation, the Khalifa International Date Palm Award and

Agricultural Innovation, and the United Nations Industrial Development

Organisation (UNIDO).

Commenting on the recent workshop, FAO Representative in Egypt, Dr Hussein

Gadain, said: “Implementing the Date Palm Strategy is expected to qualify

Egyptian dates to compete in international markets. The project seeks to present a

successful model by implementing an action plan under ideal conditions and

putting the strategy to work at Siwa Oasis, in coordination and cooperation with all

stakeholders. We hope that other regions will follow suit.”

For his part, FAO Project Advisor, Abdullah bin Abdullah, said: “One of the goals

of the project is to enhance the income sustainability for date growers, producers,

harvesters, exporters, and merchants. The project is expected to help produce high

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quality dates to compete globally. Good date types or varieties will be preserved as

genetic resources and used to create a gene bank.”

Dr Abdel Moneim al-Banna, President of the Agricultural Research Center, a

representative of the Minister of Agriculture, said “with this inception workshop

we announce the beginning of the implementation of Date Palm Strategy in Egypt,

which aims to achieve a comprehensive revival of the sector based on rapid and

sustainable development of the production systems, assembly, packaging,

manufacturing activities and exporting, beside taking advantage of date palm

remnants of which will benefit the general budget, investors, manufacturers and

traders, particularly small farmers.”

Dates are strategic for Egypt, which is the world’s top producer of the crop,

outranking Iran and Saudi Arabia. Egypt produces 1,465,030 tons of dates annually

that make 17.7 per cent of the global production of 7.5 million tons, according to

the 2014 statistics of the Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation.

Watani International

5 February 2017

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