The Minister of Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries, Abdeslam Chelghoum, urged , on Thursday in Mostaganem, farmers to exert more efforts so as to meet the domestic market’s needs in agricultural products, encouraging the agri-food industry because, he believed, agriculture will be the real alternative to hydrocarbons and a factor to diversify economy, APS reported.
In this aspect, the official announced that the import of potato seed would be definitively stopped in the next five years with the use of local seeds.
The minister also stressed on the need to encourage local seeds, calling on farmers to cooperate with agronomy and academic institutes to boost domestic production and increase yields from 250 quintals per hectare to 500 quintals per hectare, while respecting the technical process of this sector.
In the province of Mostaganem, potato production, in its three categories: early, seasonal and back-season, increased significantly from 1.5 million quintals during the 1999-2000 season to over 4.5 million quintals the past season.
In the municipality of Hassiane, the minister inspected the Bordjia area for milk production (1,800 ha), where he stressed that this project, part of the government’s strategy to strengthen strategic products, aims to reduce the importation of milk powder.
During his meeting with some investors, Chelghoum said that there are partnerships with American and Irish partners in different provinces to develop the milk sector, intensify production and reduce the import bill of milk powder.