Grape Farmers Learn New Techniques

Farmers from Zabul Province traveled to Kandahar City to learn new techniques in vine care, 	 production, and post-harvest handl
Farmers from Zabul Province traveled to Kandahar City to learn new techniques in vine care, production, and post-harvest handling.
Photo: USAID/Afghanistan
Farmers from Zabul Province traveled to Kandahar City to learn new techniques in vine care, production, and post-harvest handling.

Agriculture, and grape cultivation in particular, is the centerpiece of life in Zabul Province. The farmers from this exceptionally poor province face numerous challenges on issues involving irrigation, production, farming technologies and equipment, credit, and post-harvest processing.

A USAID program on rebuilding agriculture markets invited 30 grape farmers from three Zabul districts to travel to Kandahar City to receive training on low-cost technologies to improve the production and quality of grapes. During the workshop, the farmers visited two cold storage facilities in Kandahar City and received training in vine care, production, and post-harvest handling (sorting, packing, and storing). The farmers were provided with pruning scissors to test their newly learned skills on grape bunches. The importance of producer associations and of working together to increase business and product quality also were emphasized.

Additional training and the eventual establishment of five demonstration farms in Zabul using low-cost technology to improve production and quality are planned. The demonstration farms will serve as learning centers for farmers in Zabul.

The workshop, with the assistance of the Qalat Provincial Reconstruction Team, is a first step in a larger effort to more actively engage farmers and the agriculture sector in Zabul Province. This USAID project is part of a continued effort in partnership with the Government of Afghanistan to support the rebuilding of the country’s agriculture sector. The project addresses key agricultural constraints with the intent to raise the income and abilities of farmers in the province.

Last updated: December 27, 2013

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