Morocco imposes further water restrictions on melon cultivation
Innovation & Technology
Regulation & Compliances
Published Nov 21, 2023
Morocco is implementing measures to limit watermelon cultivation to conserve water resources, particularly in the province of Zagora. The maximum area for cultivation has been restricted to one hectare, and this applies to areas near drinking water sources and the banks of the Draa River. Authorities are monitoring water withdrawals and enforcing the restriction, with legal action against violators. Moreover, watermelon exports from Morocco have seen a significant decrease in the first half of 2023, with a 50% drop in exports to Spain, a major market.
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Morocco's government is taking further steps to restrict watermelon cultivation in an effort to conserve dwindling water resources. In the province of Zagora, an important area for watermelon cultivation, the governor has taken a decision limiting the maximum areas for watermelon cultivation to one hectare. This restriction also applies to areas close to drinking water pumping fields, including facilities that supply drinking water, and the banks of the Draa River along the oases and riverbeds. Local authorities have set up committees to monitor water withdrawals for irrigation and enforce the restriction, with legal action against violators. Morocco faces water scarcity, exacerbated by climate change and successive droughts. In 2022, the Ministry of Agriculture ended irrigation subsidies for water-intensive crops such as avocados, watermelons and citrus. Watermelon ...