More than 300,000 date palms planted to im­prove food se­cu­rity

Times of Oman - - OMAN -

Times News Ser­vice

MUS­CAT: Oman’s Min­istry of Agri­cul­ture and Fish­eries has planted more than 300,000 date palm saplings over a five-year pe­riod, in an at­tempt to im­prove the se­cu­rity of the Sul­tanate’s food chain.

In all, 324,451 date palm saplings were planted at the Sul­tanate’s Agro Tex­tile Cen­tre be­tween 2013 and 2018, with a spe­cial fo­cus on eight par­tic­u­lar types of palm seedlings. Ac­cord­ing to a re­port pub­lished by the Min­istry of Agri­cul­ture and Fish­eries, the cul­ti­vated va­ri­eties in­clude Al Fard, of which 187,275 seedlings were planted, Al Zahira Kha­las, with 72,714 seedlings, Fa­hal Al Khuri with 14.264 seedlings, Al Ma­jhul, with 13.243 seedlings and Fa­hal Bi­hu­lani, of which 12.860 seedlings were planted.

In ad­di­tion, 7,334 seedlings were planted in Falmab Siliu, 4,883 Bon­narge Palm and 7,184 seedlings of the Kha­las Oman palm were also planted, along with an ad­di­tional 7,184 seedlings of dif­fer­ent va­ri­eties. Ac­cord­ing to a study pub­lished in the Eu­ro­pean Sci­en­tific Jour­nal in 2017, “Some ap­pli­ca­tion of agro-tex­tiles prod­ucts have shown great out­comes and have had pos­i­tive im­pacts on the growth and pro­duc­tion of var­i­ous crops and veg­eta­bles.”

In ad­di­tion, a study en­ti­tled, ‘Sig­nif­i­cance of Agro-Tex­tiles and Fu­ture Prospects in Bangladesh’, by Mo­hammed Ab­dul­lah al Faruque, among oth­ers, has shown that agro-tex­tiles can save en­ergy in green­houses, im­prove yields, and lower the wastage of veg­eta­bles and fruits.

Palm trees in the Sul­tanate con­sti­tute 78 per cent of all crop and agri­cul­tural pro­duc­tion, mak­ing up 35 per cent of the to­tal agri­cul­tural area in the coun­try.

Ad­di­tion­ally, 7.6 mil­lion date palms have been planted in some 57,429 acres, while more than 900,000 palm trees have been planted along pri­vate houses.

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