Qatar: How the blockade has boosted food production

In the arid desert surrounding al-Khor city, 50 kilometres north of the capital Doha, a few camels run across the landscape breaking up the silence of the rolling sand dunes. 

Temperatures can soar up to 50 degrees Celsius, making the soil dry and inhospitable.

Yet in this unforgiving land, the presence of huge glass structures glinting in the scorching sunlight are testament to the success of a fast-expanding farming business run by Qataris.

“The metal structure of this greenhouse melted because of the heat,” said Nasser al-Khalaf, Agrico's general manager, as he put his traditional ghutra headdress back on.

An air, sea and land blockade was imposed on Qatar by Saudi Arabia and the UAE on 5 June 2017, accusing it of supporting militant groups, including some backed by Iran. Egypt, Bahrain and other allies soon followed suit. 

Since the blockade started, al-Khalaf says Agrico has doubled its production.

Read more at Middle East Eye (Sebastien Castelier, Clément Pouré)


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