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    Agriculture

    Mega poultry farm being set up in Nangarhar

    JALALABAD (PAN): The foundation stone of a mega poultry farm, employing 1,100 people including women, was laid in eastern Nangarhar province on Sunday, senior officials said.

    Being implemented in Kama district, the project would serve as a good alternative for poppy cultivation in the province, agriculture minister Mohammad Asif Rahimi told a news conference in Jalalabad.

    Four breading farms for hens to produce 3.4 million eggs annually, four incubators and meat producing facilities were part of the project, he said.

    Another part of the project was construction a factory to produce feed for hens, he said, adding a slaughterhouse would be established at the farm to provide technical services to farmers.

     The project would take three and a half years to complete and most of the beneficiaries would be women, the minister said. 

    Rahimi said the project would help boost the economic situation of people and lead to making rural areas and villages free of poppy cultivation.

    He said 170,000 people would indirectly benefit from the facility which would increase the district's income by $14 million per annum.

    Costing $5 million, a contract to the effect was signed between Rahimi and Martini, the director of an Italian organization.

    Happy over the project, Governor Gul Agha Sherzai called for such projects in other districts of the province. He urged the ministries concerned to pay attention in this regard.

    Also speaking on the occasion, deputy counter narcotics minister, Mohammad Ibrahim Azhar, said the project would have a positive impact on poppy growers.

    "Cultivation of the illicit crops is the major source of fund-raising for the insurgency, while the lives of thousands of people are threatened with drugs in Afghanistan", he said.

    Meanwhile, the agriculture minister also laid the foundation stones of a animal feed producing factory and a diary product processing plant in Jalalabad.

    Governor Gul Agha Sherzai was also present on the occasion.

    Rahimi told Pajhwok Afghan News the project included animal feed producing factory, diary products processing factory, a training centre for livestock owners, animal treatment and vaccination centre and a liquefied nitrogen manufacturing factory. 

    Funded by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the project would take three years to complete, Rahimi said, adding milk to be collected from across the province would be processed at the facility before introducing to the market in specific packets.

    Up to 1,500 families keeping household animals directly and all Nangarhar residents would indirectly benefit from the scheme, Rahimi said, hoping the project would help improve animal products at home and prevent their imports from abroad.

    mm/ma



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