Baseline study for Apple and Olive June 2007-GTFS-REM-070-ITA 

Summaryالملخص

Lebanon is approximately 10,452 km2 as surface area with only 273,000 ha dedicated to agriculture, with a population of 4.4 millions, 9.2% of which is engaged in agriculture; it is well known for the diversification in its climatology that is, in turn, a direct effect of the diversification in topography, giving it the unique potential to produce a multitude of crops.

Publication Dateتاريخ الاصدار

January-June 2007 

Detailsالتفاصيل

Until the 1980's, most of the Lebanese agricultural produce has found its way to the foreign markets in Europe, Soviet Union, and the Gulf countries. Unfortunately, this is not the case anymore for the inability to cost effectively produce a “safe” crop for both human consumption and the environment. The present situation is rather an awkward one, being the outcome result of many exacerbating flaws on the level of both, the official institutions and the producer. After more than 15 years since the Lebanese civil war has ended, the official institutions are still reluctant in issuing modernized laws, enforcing them, directing practical and beneficial research and studies, and disseminating results to growers through effective extension. The grower, traditional and uninformed in his turn, still conducts agriculture unprofessionally and wastes much of his inputs and resources, blaming the official bodies for not marketing his not-up-to-the-standards produce, when it is his prime responsibility. If the Lebanese agricultural produce is to regain its old rank and reputation for being of high quality to flow easily into the demanding markets, all the parties involved in its production, be it official or private, ought to cooperate and each hold its responsibility to fulfill its "reason of being". Considering the farmers' part, what approach can be more effective than the integrated pest management in achieving a breakthrough on the level of improving production management, decreasing its cost, and increasing the yield and profit using environment friendly ways? There are many obstacles, hanging between the growers and their adoption of the integrated pest management, substantiated in how to find the right tool and the right environment to transfer not only a certain applied technology but also a way of systematic thinking to adults, many times illiterates, hanging tenaciously and dogmatically to erroneous beliefs. Well, it seems like there is an answer to this rhetorical question, residing in the so called "Farmers Field Schools" that have proven to be successful in giving the type of education the growers need in an informal participatory way of learning in several countries all over the world. The farmers' field school provides the right environment where the growers experiment what they know alongside with what is being facilitated to them to allow them to touch and believe, the same way "Thomas believed and put his finger".

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