Circular agriculture, a lever for sustainability and efficiency

Pillar of the Al Jayl Al Akhdar strategy Integrated in the second foundation of the “Al Jayl Al Akhdar” strategy, circular agriculture is a model to follow to bring out a sustainable and efficient Moroccan agriculture. For the supervisory authority, the sustainability of agricultural development is based on the development of sustainable agriculture in terms of the use of resources, in particular water resources, the adoption of agro-ecological practices, the use of renewable energies and soil conservation and better management of agricultural waste. One example of circular farming is organic farming. It promotes the reuse of organic matter from agricultural production cycles, in this case livestock and plant crops, as it optimally protects the soil. Organic farming is indeed a key sector of the new agricultural strategy. Al Jayl Al Akhdar aims in this sense to extend organic areas to reach 100,000 hectares by 2030 against 12,000 hectares currently. The strategy also tends to strengthen organic production both on the local market and for export. Waste management is also one of the ways to bring the sector into the circular economy. In this sense, the Department of Agriculture is working towards better management of olive oil by-products (margins, pomace) by encouraging the establishment of two-phase crushing units and the valorization of these by-products. . In this context, a partnership agreement relating to projects for the collection, treatment and/or recovery of waste from olive-growing activity was signed between the Ministry of Agriculture, Maritime Fisheries, Rural Development and water and forests, the Ministry of the Interior, the departments in charge of sustainable development and water and the Moroccan Interprofessional Olive Federation (Interprolive). This agreement has so far enabled the conclusion of two specific agreements for the establishment of two collective basins for the treatment of vegetable waters in Meknes and Ouazzane. Referring to guardianship, green agricultural waste can also be recycled and used as packaging for agricultural products, for example. “This type of project will be encouraged in the context of youth entrepreneurship in particular,” says the Department of Agriculture. And to specify that “plastic waste generated by agricultural activity, in particular from greenhouse covers, plastic mulching, irrigation sheaths and tubes, trellising film and packaging of phytosanitary products, requires concerted action by from the different departments. In this regard, the Ministry of Agriculture emphasizes the need to organize the collection, treatment and recycling sector. It is with this in mind that an agreement for the recovery of plastic waste of agricultural origin has been established between the State Secretariat responsible for sustainable development, the wilaya of the Region, the Regional Council, the Regional Directorate of Agriculture and the Souss-Massa Agro-Technologies Association in order to recover agricultural plastic waste in this region and lay the foundations for its sustainability. The national program 2020-2027 in brief Drinking water supply and irrigation The national program for drinking water supply and irrigation 2020-2027 constitutes a concrete response to the challenges of sustainability within the framework of a convergence of policies sectors of water and agriculture. This program supports the strengthening of investments in water supply, thanks to the mobilization of conventional and unconventional water resources, combined with the pursuit of efforts for efficient management of the demand for irrigation water. Referring to the supervision, the construction of 20 new structural dams, the establishment of 3 new seawater desalination projects and the finalization of 5 others, the commissioning of 150 new small dams and the construction of 20 to 30 hillside dams per year, mobilizing a budget of 34.5 billion dirhams, should make it possible to substantially increase the water supply both for the supply of drinking water and for irrigation. Alongside structural actions aimed at strengthening the water supply, programs aimed at strengthening the resilience of irrigated agriculture to deal with the water deficit will be continued and strengthened, through the modernization of irrigation systems and the conversion localized irrigation of 350,000 additional hectares for an investment of 9.5 billion dirhams, which would bring the total area under localized irrigation to nearly one million hectares, i.e. more than 60% of the total area under irrigation, the preservation of small-scale irrigated agriculture through the rehabilitation and renovation of small and medium-sized hydraulic perimeters over nearly 200,000 hectares, particularly in vulnerable areas such as oases and mountain areas.