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Beirut – Food security and a cooperation project

The FAO office in Lebanon with Lebanese Ministry of Agriculture has launched a project funded by the Italian Agency for Development  Cooperation. “Enhance the Livelihood and Food Security of Vulnerable Lebanese Women through Improving their Dairy Production Practices and Supporting their Dairy Processing Activities” proposes a number of ways to organise the dairy sector in all of its phases, particularly focusing on the safety and quality of the products. The project pays special attention to the most vulnerable groups, small-scale farmers and women led households active in the sector. The goal is to provide proper supplies to improve traditional dairy products as well as training families and farmers. The project also includes information sessions for families and farmers and the distribution of small-sized cheese factories, as well as single processing units, stainless-steel milk tanks and kits to produce milk and dairy products that meet quality and hygiene standards. Women-led households and small-scale farmers working in the dairy sectors are the project’s targets as indicated on the Utl website. They live in approximately 40 villages in the country’s most vulnerable areas. Four hundred households , 2,00 people working milk processing,  are due to take part in the project . (Sip)

The project is also geared to increase the income of rural people by establishing a link between small-scale producers and dairy producers’ associations and collection and refrigeration centres. It aims to improve the quality of diary products and so contribute to enhancing public health by reducing bacteriological contamination through the introduction of modern techniques and equipment. The launch ceremony was attended by the Minister of Agriculture, Mr Akram Chehayeb  the Director of the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation in Lebanon, Mr. Gianandrea Sandri,  the representative of FAO in Lebanon, Dr. Maurice Saade, and the Director General of the Ministry of Agriculture Eng. Louis Lahoud. Mr Sandri said: “We are particularly eager that the project, in addition to small farmers, will include at least 50% women-led households active in the dairy sector. In Italy, women cooperatives play an important role as a production model and I really wish for a synergy between Italian and Lebanese farmers cooperatives in the framework of this project.”

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