UNDP explored new horizons for problem-solving for olive farmers in Hasbaya
The Cooperative for Olive Farmers in Hasbaya, South Lebanon has achieved a unique specialty in transforming the residue of olives into livestock feed at their site. For the process, they employ the equipment and machinery offered by the United Nations Development Programme in Lebanon (UNDP).
These two primary machines - the pressing machine for olive residue and the livestock feed mixer - are “crucial for producing the olive compost used in animal feed,” explains Mahdy Saasouh, the president of the cooperative.
- The project’s objective to help farmers develop socially and economically served to benefit 25 members of the cooperation and their families with a direct increase in income as well as 40 local farms comprising 160 families who benefited from the sustainable and healthy produce for their farms
Interestingly, the olive residue is also used for energy and fuel consumption. This generates an environmental sustainability aspect to the project, as the olive residue produced with the machinery can also be used for heating and energy consumption in addition to serving as animal feed for livestock. Furthermore, considering the demand for livestock feed is not seasonally dependent, the project serves to maintain a stable and continuous development year-round, unlike agriculture’s seasonal highs and lows.
Previously, the farmers of Hasbaya consistently suffered from the high prices of livestock feed because of its exclusive monopolizing source in the region. However, after the cooperative introduced this original and practical specialty, farmers were offered better quality animal feed at a more economically viable price.
The project’s objective to help farmers develop socially and economically served to benefit 25 members of the cooperation and their families with a direct increase in income as well as 40 local farms comprising 160 families who benefited from the sustainable and healthy produce for their farms. Saasouh illustrated the project’s outcome fittingly; “the UNDP funds benefited both the farmers in the region as well as the cooperative itself in a way that allowed us to explore new horizons for problem-solving.”