Improving forage/fodder production on salt-affected farms in Laayoune, Morocco
Foum El Oued irrigated perimeter is an economically very important zone in Laayoune region. However, with the overexploitation of aquifer and inefficient management of agricultural inputs groundwater salinity increased which limits the production of traditional cultivated crops (corn, alfalfa, vegetables…etc.). Thus, the need for a sustainable cropping system introducing alternative crops tolerant to salinity is a must to maintain the agricultural activity in the region. It has been observed that soil and water salinity is negatively impacting the crop production in the study area. It is therefore important to understand the existing crop management practices (crop varieties, irrigation systems, salinity management) in Foum El Oued – Laayoune project, to develop management strategies to improve productivity, and to introduce other and alternative salt-tolerant forages developed by ICBA, at INRA experimental station and farmers’ fields.
Phosboucraä Foundation (PBF) has approved implementation of Foum El Oued project with Halib sakia El Hamra Cooperative, INRA and Ministry of Agriculture as partners. The project aims to improve the livelihood of small holder farmers through improving forage maize and alfalfa productivity and introduction of salt-tolerant forage production systems.
ICBA is acting as a Technical Advisor to the project and provide regular technical support for the implementation of the project activities and strengthen human resources and facilities of local partners in various aspects of salt-tolerant production systems.
Dr. Hirich Abdelaziz