1- A seminar was held on grape crops in Birmanah Region, which falls under the Hallah region, on 01/02/2020, in presence of major grape farmers in the region, as well as Babel’s Directorate of Agriculture and agent Ahmad Al-Saffar, along with the Debbane Agri team represented by Engineer Haidar, Engineer Saleh, Dr. Hussein, and Engineer Amir (Regional Director). The seminar tackled several topics, including the adoption of a good fertilization system to boost productivity, by using the Yara Complex fertilizer and Orgevit, as well as adopting a system for preventing fungal disease risks. A renown farmer was selected to carry out our company’s fertilization program, in order to compare this with his traditional fertilization process.
2- On 07/03/2020, the Debbane Agri fertilization program was rolled out on grape crops in the Birmana region. The Debbaneh team helped the farmer determine the fertilizer quantity, mix it, and pour it around grape trees. Likewise, the program also included ground and leaf fertilization, along with fungus and inspect control, as documented in the reports.
3- Agent Ahmad Al-Saffar was taken on a field visit to Birmana region, which is renowned for its grape crops. The visit took place on 23/04/2020 and was aimed at following up on the outcomes of Debbane Agri’s fertilization program on grape crops, in terms of productivity, vegetative growth, improving grape trees, and comparing between Debbane Agri’s fertilizer and other traditional fertilizers used by the farmer (i.e. DAP and Urea).
4- Agent Riad Ghani was given a private field visit to protected cucumber crops on 15/03/2020, to follow up on the outcomes of using Terrasol Magnum, Neutral Terrasol, along with Yara Complex fertilizers. The visit sought to compare with other competing fertilizers, in terms of quality and productivity increase.
5- Regular follow-ups were conducted on Italian Bora wheat crops, planted in the Babel region, from the moment they are cultivated until they are harvested. In addition, our team supervised the farmer’s fertilization process, and followed up on combatting the spread of bushed surrounding wheat plants.
6- Regular follow-ups were conducted on the new Arab and Byzantine wheat varieties, from the moment they are cultivated until they are harvested. In addition, our team supervised the fertilization process. Major wheat farmers and agent were also taken on field visits to observe these varieties.
7- On 20/05/2020, several agents and farmers were taken on a field visit to observe the Italian Bora wheat crops in several areas in Babel province, in order to compare them to other competing varieties, in terms of productivity, quantitative weight and resistance.
8- On 18/05/2020, during Ramadan, agent Riad Ghani was taken on a visit to the Debbane Agri Baghdad station, to observe the new planted varieties of Chili and sweet pepper, watermelon, melon, cabbage and tomatoes. The characteristics of these varieties were explained, along with the best timing for cultivation, the specific fertilization program for each crop, in order to guarantee increased productivity and an improved quality.
9- On 19/05/2020, a special visit was organized to the Babel Directorate of Agriculture, which included a meeting with Agriculture Director Mr. Khaled Al-Qarra Ghouli, to follow up on the handover process of the Bora wheat, before it is marketed by farmers. In an attempt to facilitate the marketing of this wheat variety to farmers, the Al-Halla Silo was visited, and a discussion was held with the silo director and seed examination lab director, whereby they were handed the official books related to the registration of the Bora wheat, thus rendering the market process easier for farmers, without any obstructions in delivery.
10- On 20/05/2020, agent Riad Ghani was taken on a visit to view Debbane Agri’s original cucumber varieties in Nahiya region, and to compare it to other competing varieties in terms of quality and productivity.
11- Our team followed up on the Bora wheat harvesting process in several regions in Babel, calculated the amount of wheat produced per dunum and compared it to other competing varieties harvested nearby. Debbane Agri also took part in the harvesting processes carried out by several farmers and dealers.
In solidarity with the families affected by the Beirut Port Explosion on August 4th, 2020, Offre Joie Association offered its support by restoring residential buildings in Mar Mikhael and Gemayzeh areas, to allow families a safe return to their homes before Christmas. In this context, and in support of this initiative, Debbane Agri Holding company and Exotica joined efforts to decorate building balconies with poinsettia (Christmas flowers) and other plants in order to instill true Christmas spirit, hope and belief in a better tomorrow. All our support and love go to Offre Joie Association and the affected families.
Dear Partners, 2020 has been an exceptionally difficult year; a year that can be simply described as the “Survival Year”. This is a time like no other in our lives. We have faced demonstrations, streets unrest, devastating Covid-19 pandemic and of course hyper-inflation, eating our wealth away. Yes, we faced all these catastrophic events, what if we top them up with the Beirut blast that turned our beloved city into ashes, sadly with lots of deaths and casualties. By no means I am trying to draw a dramatic image here; but I am rather showing how resilient we are as a team. These challenges brought out the best in each and every one of us; and hence, we have emerged even stronger. Our teams and head of departments have shown high level of commitment, and an exemplary perseverance that helped us stay afloat throughout the storms. For all of these I am grateful. Our 2020 results were not up to what we aimed for; but I can, with all confidence, say that we fought hard and we did our level best. Our “Agility” strategy, we started adapting back in 2019 has been properly followed by everyone, and hence today Debbane Agri is geared up and better prepared, to face another challenging year 2021. The way we decided to face 2021 is to continue with our “Agility” strategy; however, and in-line with the Board of Directors’ directions, we will be launching several tactical development projects at some operations, and we will also start exploring new markets for expansion. We always aim higher, and for brighter days. Nothing of course can happen unless we continue as always working in harmony as one team: BOD, Management & Operations; while adhering to our Group values. Finally, I would seize this opportunity to thank each and everyone of you for an amazing job and outstanding contribution. I would also like to thanks Messrs. Etienne & Fady Debbane for being always there for me, and of course the Board of Directors for their guidance and the overwhelming faith they put in me. Wish you all Merry Christmas & Happy New Year With respect and gratitude, John Fawaz
On 05/12/2020, Debbane for Modern Agriculture organized a field day for the observation of desert tomato varieties at Najaf station, in the presence of a large number of desert tomato farmers and more than 100 of our agents in Najaf and Karbala. The cultivated varieties and the most important characteristics of our commercial varieties "Jida" and "Umniah" were explained in detail, in addition to the most important features required for the successful growth of these varieties in a desert environment. Debbane representatives also covered the protection and fertilization programs of tomatoes and the importance of using good fertilizers and effective pesticides to ensure a successful agricultural process and to protect plants from pests. Tomato fertilization materials and programs from our company were also discussed.
For the second year Debbane Freres supports Berytech Lebanon to launch the fourth edition of Agrytech Hackathon. However, this year, the Hackathon is a bit different. It’s an E-Hackathon that was conducted online from 3 to 18 December 2020. What is Agrytech E-Hackathon? The Agrytech Hackathon is organized online by Berytech in partnership and with the full and unwavering support of the Embassy of the Kingdom of The Netherlands in Lebanon. This e-hackathon is an exciting opportunity to develop innovative solutions to real-life challenges using technologies such as Internet of Things, Big Data and Artificial Intelligence in the agri-food sector. Throughout the e-hackathon, participants will receive the assistance of technical, industry and business experts, and will have access to the tools and hardware prototyping facilities at the Berytech Fab Lab. The winners of the e-Hackathon will win valuable prizes and get the chance to be enrolled in Berytech’s Agrytech Accelerator Program. Who Can Apply? You are encouraged to apply if you are an engineer, scientist, maker, creative, innovator, entrepreneur or a young professional who has an innovative solution or runs an early-stage agri-food startup that falls under the pre-set agri-food challenges (see below). Your solution – an idea or within an early-stage startup, needs to fall under the agri-food sector, solve one of the pre-set challenges and should include a tech component (Software, hardware, IOT). You can apply with your own idea as long as it falls under one of the pre-set challenges. Your solution should include an innovative process, product or service with the capacity to increase economical value and create job opportunities in Lebanon, solving one of the pre-set challenges below. To participate you need to be a team of at least 3 people, preferably including one technical person. If you don’t have a team, no worries, you can still register, join the first phase of the hackathon, and find a team. The online hackathon is open for teams residing in Lebanon only. Anyone is encouraged to participate in next year’s challenge 2021 from today! The Winners The Final phase of winners’ selection was held online on Friday December 18th 2020 with the participation of many jury members including Debbane Freres General Manager Mr. Zaher Ballout as well as members from Berytech and others… This edition, 4 winners were announced: Agrocedrus in the first place (prize is USD 4,500 and access to the Agrytech Accelerator Program), the second place went to Beekeepers and Collarvet (prize is USD 3,500 and access to the Agrytech Accelerator Program) while Pinemed received the third place (prize is USD 1,000. Agrocedrus, Beekeepers, and Collarvet received a golden pass to join the #AgrytechAccelerator.