In response to the demand of rural Moroccan communities for fruit trees and their need to transition from subsistence to modern agriculture, this project will plant 250,000 walnut and almond tree seeds and 70,000 medicinal plants in 4 tree nurseries in the High Atlas Mountains. Villagers especially request these particular trees because they do not require pesticides, have a high market value, and local people already possess vital skills for maintaining the trees and marketing their fruit.
What is the issue, problem, or challenge?
85% of rural Moroccan households earn less than the national average. Population growth and the low market-value of traditional staple crops (such as barley), from which most rural households derive their income, have made subsistence agriculture unsustainable, compelling farmers to transition to plant cash-crops, most commonly fruit trees, to generate significantly greater income.
How will this project solve this problem?
This project will build 4 community-managed organic fruit tree and medicinal plant nurseries in the High Atlas Mountains, giving the community access to a sustainable source of income. HAF will train local agriculturalists, including women and youth, on organic certification and export and methods of growing trees and plants, creating self-reliance. 1 million trees have already been planted with communities, which helps absorb carbon dioxide to curb emissions and prevent very serious erosion.
Potential Long Term Impact
The project integrates solutions to socio-economic and environmental problems, and will: 1) after 6 years increase multifold the income of 2000 households from fruit sales, benefiting 15,000 people; 2) diversify the economy and reduce urban migration; 3) prevent soil erosion and offset carbon emissions; 4) develop technical skills of 32 farmers to maintain and replenish the nurseries; 5) diversify diets with fruit consumption.
Total Funding Received to Date: $8,725
Remaining Goal to be Funded: $18,155
Total Funding Goal: $26,880