Rural Capacity Development: Armenian Government introduces a program on orchards

The Government of Armenia is planning to implement a $52 million fruit-growing development program in three provinces of Armenia with 700 hectares farm land for orchards to be created (in Vayots Dzor, Tavush, and Aragatsotn provinces).

“This is a big chain, starting from import of saplings to harvest gathering, which will be managed by ‘Armenian Fruit’ OJSC,” Sergo Karapetyan, Minister of Agriculture, said at a briefing followed by the government session. “It will be founded by the government, which will own 100 percent shares of the company. And later, once the works are organized and the process succeeds, other investors should be involved, thanks to whom the shares will be privatized, and the government’s funds’, invested in the company will be recovered.”

The agriculture minister reported that modern technologies (for example, sampling nourishment) will be introduced within the framework of the program.

Armenian Fruit will deal with fruit sorting, packaging, advertisement, as well as export issues. Villagers who have up to two hectares land will be included in the program.

Fruit-growing will be developed within the framework of Rural Capacity Building Program, approved at the government session on Thursday.

According to the government, this large-scale initiative aims to support poor small-volume producers, the main producers of fruits and nuts, as well as the whole population of needy communities of mountainous regions in Armenia.