RIYADH — The Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture (MEWA) has taken a significant step towards agricultural innovation and sustainability by localizing the production of banana seedlings in Saudi Arabia, particularly in the Jazan region.

Utilizing advanced tissue culture and propagation techniques, the Ministry's center for plant tissue culture and biotechnology has succeeded in cultivating various banana varieties that are suited to the Kingdom's climate.

These high-quality, disease-free seedlings, grown in both greenhouses and open fields, mark a significant advancement in the agricultural sector by enhancing sustainability and productivity.

The localization of seedling production is expected to attract investment in tissue culture technology, focusing on intensifying the production of nutritionally rich varieties for higher economic returns.

Importing seedlings currently results in significant economic losses, estimated at around 25%, whereas local production boasts a substantially lower expected loss rate.

As part of its commitment to the Saudi Green Initiative, MEWA has launched initiatives to plant 45 million fruit trees on agricultural terraces and four million lemon trees using renewable water by 2030.

These efforts, in collaboration with private sector institutions and the Agricultural Development Fund, emphasize the Kingdom's move towards more sustainable and cost-effective fruit cultivation methods, reinforcing the focus on local production for the benefit of the economy and the environment.

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