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USAID-Funded Program Improves Banana Production in South Lebanon

USAID: Humanitarian Assistance to Lebanon

U.S. Embassy Beirut
October 25, 2007

With USAID funding, the Cooperative Housing Foundation (CHF) is currently improving banana production in Saida, South Lebanon. Within the context of this project, CHF introduced the concept of the net house for growing bananas, in order to protect them from adverse climatic conditions. The net house technique enables farmers to produce 8 tons of banana bunches per 1,000 square meters, as compared to 2.5 tons in open fields. The selling price of bananas has also increased as a result of the project because of early harvesting and proper post-handling, reflecting a 14% increase in net profit. The project also features training on harvesting and post-harvesting techniques targeting farmers and growers. As of September 2007, 190 tons of bananas have been produced, generating $103,684 in total sales. The project has also created 209 jobs and trained more than 530 persons on various related subjects.

Funded by the U.S. Government, the CEDARSplus program aims to revitalize the agricultural sector, contribute to the reintegration of rural areas into the national economy as well as create new jobs. As part of the program, the U.S. Government provided training to a number of agricultural engineers and experts from various institutions. Funded at a level of $8.3 million over a period of two years, the program has thus far benefited 3, 600 farmers, traders, students, retailers, exporters and other agricultural stakeholders.

"Photo of the Week" is a product of U.S. Embassy Beirut to highlight the U.S. Government's development, relief, reconstruction, and humanitarian assistance to Lebanon. For more information, visit the Embassy's website at http://lebanon.usembassy.gov.

Southern worker packs harvested bananas.

 


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