U.S. Agency for International Development

Success Stories

Mamoon Majeed wanted to expand his Dahuk feedlot business to add a butcher shop for the residents of Dahuk. This wasn’t an easy operation for Ma’moon to create the Blann Butcher Shop. The skills involved in breaking down carcasses takes time and effort in order to have the types of products consumers want to buy.

Thirteen-year-old Feryal takes care of her cow “Apple”, aiding her recovery from family tragedy.

Tragedy is a word still often heard and used in Iraq. Thousands of Iraqis have suffered immeasurable and devastating losses due to the continuing violence throughout the country.

Feryal was one of the many children suffering. The 13-year-old girl witnessed the death of her father and eight other family members at the hands of Al-Qaeda. The experience of witnessing this brutality turned her despondent, isolated and cut off from the world around her, even her surviving family.

The hardships Iraqi widows endure on a daily basis is often tragic and devastating. Many are without a job, without the basic essentials for life and many are raising children they must feed and care for in horrendous conditions. The loss of their husbands and loved ones have left many without any opportunities for a better life because of the lack of education or job skills to earn a monthly income.

A customer chooses among attractively-packaged date varieties on display in Duty Free Shop

The Al Basra Dates Company is starting to realize that success is as sweet as the dates they produce.

As a result of the high quality date products, trendy packaging and an extensive market penetration through the assistance of the USAID-Inma marketing team, sales for Al Basra Dates Company have risen more than 265 percent since January 2011.

With the opening of the Iraq Grandparents Feed Mill, approximately 425 poultry farms will now have convenient access to quality poultry feed.

The Iraq Grandparents Feed Mill opened for business on July 25, 2011, becoming the fifth feed mill upgraded to International standards by the USAID-Inma Agribusiness Program.

In 2009, the USAID-Inma Agribusiness Program determined that an important intervention for the Livestock–Protein sector was to improve the quality of feed available to Iraqi producers. To address the problem, six feed mills in different provinces were chosen for production improvements.

A customer compares high-quality Iraqi sweets at Baghdad International Airport.

For the first time, travelers passing through Baghdad International Airport can pack a taste of Iraq in their carry-ons. The USAID-Inma Agribusiness Program has helped stock the duty-free shop with specialty food products from Iraq’s southern and central provinces. These include orange blossom, alfalfa, eucalyptus and jujube honeys, Basrah date snacks with nuts, and Anbar rice, said to be the fragrant grain preferred by former kings.

Forum panelists discuss the best ways to develop the Iraqi agricultural market..

As agriculture in Iraq grows and evolves, many farmers, packing house operators, wholesalers and food suppliers have questions about the future. They wonder whether produce will be sold in stalls or in supermarkets. They contemplate the impact that imported goods will have on Iraqi-raised products.

Saleh Ai Hama Salah tenderly attends to his pomegranate orchards while speculating on economic opportunities in his region. A farmer from the lush mountains of the Sulaymaniyah province in Northern Iraq, pomegranates are a main staple in his area, renowned for producing Iraq's most durable fruit with the highest export potential. However, ongoing conflicts in past years have severed trade links, limiting economic possibility while isolating and exhausting genetic stock.

Khudair Al Emarah remembers when Baghdad’s Tigris riverfront restaurants were packed with families feasting on 'mazgouf', carp split open and slowly roasted over a wood fire. As security and economic stability increase, Iraqis desire a return to consumption patterns that define their national identity. Simultaneously, business entrepreneurs like Khudair are working around the clock to raise the production quality, quantity, and profits of agribusiness enterprises such as the Euphrates Fish Farm Hatchery (EFFH).

After inspection by the USAID-Inma technical team, an Iraqi transportation company loads trees and grape vines for shipment to Iraqi farmers.

A competitive market filled with fresh fruit is on the horizon after decades of civil and international strife devastated Iraq's once vibrant orchard and vineyard production. With the distribution of 25,000 fruit tree saplings (peaches, plums, tangerines, and pomegranates) and 25,200 grape vines from California, the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Inma Agribusiness Program is assisting in the revitalization of the orchard and vineyard industry (with the Ministry of Agriculture’s approval).