The Minister of Environment H E Ahmed Amer Mohamed Al Humaidi inaugurating the Al Khor-Al Dhakira market yesterday.
DOHA: Qatar expects to meet 40 to 50 percent of its requirements for livestock and agricultural products through local produce in the next three to five years, the Minister of Environment H E Ahmed Amer Mohamed Al Humaidi said yesterday.
The Minister yesterday opened the Al Khor-Al Dhakira yard, the second market after the Mazrouh yard in Umm Salal, that offers fresh vegetables from local farms for sale at highly competitive prices.
Speaking to the media after opening the new market, the Minister said Qatar was keen to support local farmers to meet the growing demand for livestock and agricultural products in the country.
Currently, locally produced livestock can meet 20 to 30 per cent of the country’s requirements while vegetables from local farms meet 10 to 15 percent of the requirements.
“This will be increased to 40 to 50 percent in the next three to five years,” said the Minister.
He said the government is giving lands to the farmers, besides technical and financial support as parts of efforts to achieve food security. “ I met with the farmers and listened to their suggestions to increase local produce,” said the minister.
He said opening of the new market was inspired by the success of Al Mazrouah yard set up last year. More such markets will be opened in the country including one in Al Wakrah, he added.
“There is no middlemen in these markets and the farmers don’t have to pay any fee (for the stalls). This will reduce their cost and the market is beneficial for citizens and expatriates, where they can buy fresh and best quality products at best prices,” said the Minister. The Al Khor-Al Dhakira yard located near Al Khor roundabout has 22 outlets selling vegetables from different local farms. Only two farms that have stalls in Mazrouah yards are participating in the new market while all others are new, according to Yousuf Khalid Al Khulaifi, Director of Agricultural Affairs Department at the Ministry.
“ We will include stalls for fresh fish, poultry and livestock in the new market if there is a need,” said Khulaifi.
Farhoud Al Hajiri, director of animal resources department at the Ministry said there is a plan to set up a slaughter house- fixed or mobile- at the new market.
Like the Mazrouah yard, the new market is open on three days a week — Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays — from 7am to 5pm until the end of the harvest season.The Peninsula