Morocco: farm produce consumption grows

Moroccans prefer products with safe traceability

16 June, 13:20

    Daily life in Marrakech [ARCHIVE MATERIAL 20131219 ] Daily life in Marrakech [ARCHIVE MATERIAL 20131219 ]

    (by Diego Minuti) - ROME- Eating good and healthy food is not only a western mantra, as shown by the booming consumption of farm produce in Morocco. Indeed consumption of products rigorously made in Morocco has now reached 90%. Such a phenomenon would appear inevitable in a country where agriculture covers about 20% of GDP. However, such a trend is due to the fact that consumers are increasingly looking for quality and think it is ensured by local production.

    Everybody is talking about a new culture that seems to have gained ground and can only make the country proud. Morocco approved a few years ago the project ''Green Morocco'' aimed at investing in the agriculture sector, which employs about 40% of the overall workforce with an injection of funding to modernize structures.

    The plan is ambitious and realistic, providing for aid, until 2020, to the majority of agricultural enterprises deemed worthy with funding worth 10 billion euros aimed at promoting 200 products guaranteed by two 'labels' that are highly sought after by consumers: the Protected geographical indication and the Protected designation of origin, whose absence often leads consumers to choose other produce.

    Among products are early fruits and vegetables, cultivated across 25,000 hectares with a production touching at the end of 2013 two million tons, 88% of which for domestic consumption, 8% for exports and the rest for transformation.

    The hit parade of products includes the largest production and increased consumption of potatoes, string beans and strawberries - conquering an increasing share of the market - as well as peas, avocados, peaches, nectarines, pears, kiwis and prunes.

    The growing financial importance of the sector is confirmed by a recent statistic from a study on 100 farm cooperatives across Morocco.

    An important result concerns their turnover, which has gone from the nine million dirham in 2008 (Some 800,000 euros) to 320 million dirham (30 million euros) in 2014. 

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