In January 2012, the Royal Society for Conservation of Nature (RSCN) partnered with Al Kifah Cooperative Society to implement a project to develop organic farming in Ajloun. INVESTBANK provided funding support to the project.
The ongoing project aims to improve the livelihoods and create job opportunities for a group of farming families in the area. The project also aims to support the protection of the landscapes and forests by retaining traditional farming practices. This project is paving the way to expand organic crop production as an alternative and viable commercial enterprise for low income farming communities across a larger area of Ajloun.
Al Kifah established a cluster of 25 farms in four areas (Sakhra, Ain Jana, Kofranja, and Rajeb) within Ajloun governorate. The RSCN’s organic farming project follows on from a Royal Court sponsored project in 2010 that sponsored a three-year organic transformation and certification of a cluster of farms.
RSCN and Al Kifah work with farmers to develop lists of produce and production volumes based on local factors, such as local suitability, geography, demand for high quality local organic produce and the ability to spread out farming of the herbs across Ajloun via the cluster.
RSCN also provides support to Al Kifah to work with farmers to set out a production plan which included the types, volumes, plowing, cultivation, planting and picking seasons. Al kifah also provides direction to farmers on how to use pesticide, manure, and how to sort produce after picking to minimize damaged produce. After assessing the farms’ needs, Al Kifah provides infrastructure support, such as water tanks, fences or vine structures, or incentives such as organic seeds, fertilizers and pesticides.
Thanks to the success of the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature’s ‘Development of Organic Farming in Ajloun Project’ funded by INVESTBANK and implemented by Al Kifah Society, Ajloun is leading the way for organic farming in Jordan. The project has contributed to an increasing number of farmers interested in and committed to organic farming techniques.