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Clustering for Economic Development and Revitalization of Industry Sectors - CEDARS Program (2002 – 2005)

CEDARS was a three-year program strengthening the agribusiness industry as an engine of economic revitalization, reintegrating rural areas into the national economy, and generating thousands of new jobs. CHF identified 4 geographic areas with clear competitive advantages for the clustering of targeted industry enterprises: North Lebanon, Saida, Tyre, and the Bekaa. CEDARS focused on specific agribusiness goods and services, prepared agricultural development initiatives, identified industry anchors, implemented strategic economic plans that focused on identified industry anchors within the agribusiness and light agro-industry sector, and designed activities focusing on strengthening the product-to-market chain. The success of this process depended on supporting the entire goods or services chain through leveraging available resources to reinforce or create key links in this chain. In each growth pole, CHF worked with Economic Development Advisory Committees (EDACs), comprising an array of local stakeholders, to select the most appropriate anchors and support industry agents in implementing new agribusiness initiatives. EDACs represented the professional and confessional diversity of each area, and include women. CHF also worked closely with local communities, organizations, cooperatives, governmental institutions, local and international academic institutions, as well as its geographic partners (including Rene Moawad Foundation -RMF, Hariri Foundation - HF, Association d’Aide au Development Rural - ADR and AMEEN).

CHF and its partners worked in 13 agri-business industry anchors: Banana production; Vegetables production under greenhouses; Flower production and marketing; Blossom and rose water production; Agro-food production; Organic compost production; Citrus-Valencia storage and post-harvest; Fruit trees; Forage production; Goat production; Agricultural central market (in the GP North Lebanon as well as its extension to the GP Bekaa), and Chicory production