Tunisia – Two Young Tunisians successfully cultivate dragon fruit.

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Location: Tunis – Tunisian

Language: Arabic

Duration: 00:05:39

Sound: Natural

Source: A24 in Tunisian

Restrictions: A24 subscribers

Date: 05/06/2022

Storyline:

Two Young Tunisians have successfully cultivated dragon fruit for the first time in Tunisia, where soil and climatic conditions for growing Dragon fruit are highly favorable.

The two men, who have experience of organic dragon fruit farming, told A24 News Agency’s reporter that their country has become the second African country to succeed in establishing farmlands for dragon fruit grain.

Hoping to export this fruit abroad in the future, the young men said they have four farmlands in different areas in Tunisia after they convinced other farmers to start farming the dragon fruit, also known as pitaya.

For the most part, dragon fruit is safe to eat and offers many health benefits due to its vitamins , antioxidant properties, fiber. The fruit prevents cancer and helps adjust sugar and blood pressure levels.

Dragon fruit is often used as an active ingredient in cosmetic treatments. 

Shotlist:

-Soundbite (Abdulrahman – Partner in the dragon fruit grain project):

“The idea for the project started about six or seven years ago, when my friend and neighbor Wissam Farhat returned from the Gulf, where he got to know the tropical dragon fruit. After he suggested the project idea to me, we started searching on the Internet about dragon fruit and its characteristics, about the appropriate climate for it, and how much water it needs. In our research we discovered there is no significant difference between the weather in Tunisia and in countries where dragon fruit is cultivated, such as Mexico and East Asia;Vietnam and Thailand. In order to implemetn the project, we started researching this plant. We see it in Tunisia in the fields and in home gardens. People plant it as an ornamental plant that only produces a flower, but they have not reached the stage of producing the fruit.”

-Soundbite (Abdulrahman – Partner in the dragon fruit grain project):

“We collected a large stock of the plant and started experimenting and monitoring over a period of three years. We have succeeded in establishing four farmlands in different areas. We are here in the Bouficha farmland, we have other farmlands in Djerba, Mornag and Bakalta, which is the first farmland and where we conducted our experiments.”

-Soundbite (Wissam Farhat – Project owner and agricultural expert):

“The process of cultivation in Tunisia is easy. I was able to learn the cultivation technique from my East Asian friends, with whom I worked abroad. This tree would not produce without proper cultivation technique; it has set times for irrigation and organic fertilizer, avoiding contact with insects, especially the top of the growing flower is important, otherwise it will not produce for a year. When flowering, the technician must monitor the amount of water so that the flower does not fall. There is also specialized pollination to produce a larger and better fruit with better taste.”

-Soundbite (Abdulrahman – Partner in the dragon fruit grain project):

“We are the first to implement this idea in Tunisia. We are also the second or third in North Africa, which makes it difficult to convince others to become partners in this project.”

-Soundbite (Salim Hamuda – Farmer and farmland owner):

“I own this land with my partner Mohammed Al-Dimasi. We welcomed the young men and got to know them. There is five of us involved in this project. I tasted dragon fruit abroad and have liked it since then. When the young men managed to develop their idea, I was very happy.”

-Soundbite (Abdulrahman – Partner in the dragon fruit grain project):

“Many contacted us to praise us and our project idea, especially that many Tunisians tried dragon fruit abroad, and know its nutritional value. Others called to buy grain. Hopefully, by the end of the summer there will good crop yields. We plan to supply the entire Tunisian market, we should introduce dragon fruit to the consumer culture in Tunisia.”

-Soundbite (Salim Hamuda – Farmer and farmland owner):

“I believe in this project and hope to develop it further. We will work to expand the project so we can export our product abroad.”

-Soundbite (Abdulrahman – Partner in the dragon fruit grain project):

“We currently have more than twenty varieties that we have planted with differences in size, color and taste. We have also managed to grow international varieties. Dragon fruit is rich in fiber, vitamins A, B and C, antioxidants, it prevents cancer, adjusts sugar and blood pressure levels, and is also used in cosmetics. With these many properties, it truly is a magical plant.”

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