The 4CE-MED team of ICARDA Morocco visited farmers fields and Women Cooperative (Cooperative Feminine Magador) in Essaouira region of Morocco to expand cultivation of camelina and value addition to camelina oil respectively. Local people living in these arid and semi-arid regions have created an incredible production system based on the argan tree. These argan trees are endemic to this region. These local communities mainly lead by women make oil and other products from the argan trees, using local knowledge.
The women cooperatives such as Cooperative Feminine Magador in this region are actively helping women imparting necessary training for value addition, to produce quality products such as oil, soaps, and food products and marketing. The tourists make stop over in such places not only see the argan trees, the tree climbing goats, but also taste and buy argan oil and other products, thereby increasing income of local farmers.
The region receives around 200-250 mm of annual rainfall during good years. Increasing fuel prices made farmers to use animals for land preparation. Both farmers and Women Cooperatives were expressed interest in cultivation of camelina in between argan and live trees and value addition of camelina. They agreed to participate in the project activities during coming season.