Date Palms

We Need Youth! Small mechanization to preserve Moroccan Oases

For centuries, oases supported agriculture and sustained livelihoods in arid climates. Over the last few decades, oases in Morocco have been progressively neglected. They are fragile ecosystems and without constant care from the next generation, are facing progressive degradation. Date palms are one of the most important resources in an oasis, but as a consequence of the progressive land abandonment, the loss of knowledge and labour force are hindering its production.

The University of Florence, in collaboration with the University of Moulay Ismail and ICARDA, proposed the introduction of small machines as a possible solution to reduce the drudgery of farm work, facilitate field operations, and make agriculture more attractive for the young farmers.


However, Pietro Bartolini explained that the main limitations may be linked to access, in fact the investment cost is often not affordable for smallholders. For this reason, the proposed intervention will target local cooperatives, in order to ensure a better economic sustainability.

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