projects will concentrate on a three-pronged approach to going ahead:
Next planting season, early spring 2009, POM354 will start an extensive tree planting scheme in the Nangarhar, Laghman, and Kunar Provinces. In support of this, POM354 will immediately initiate a number of projects aimed at obtaining wide involvement and cooperation from various sources.
And similar initiatives, where the generation of essential funds is as important as the creation of as many links as possible between people in 'our world' and the people in rural Afghanistan.
A major problem, and reason for many to switch from Pomegranates to poppies, has been the inability of Afghan farmers to sell their produce when ripe. Partly because of the ongoing military struggle. But, perhaps just as importantly, also due to the lack, or destruction, of infrastructure and means to store and, when appropriate, distribute the fruit. Positive results of such facilities have already been shown by some initiatives in Kandahar Province.
Pomegranates, without a doubt, have enormous global potential. Local storage facilities are, therefore, of crucial importance in the move to reinstate pomegranates as a viable alternative livelihood for Afghan farmers.
Another essential ingredient is to develop a local capability to process any or all of the orchards'yields.
There are many applications for products derived from this extremely versatile fruit. Worldwide demand for many of these products is steadily increasing, making it more than worthwhile to produce them locally.
Within the context of POM354, extensive research, and in some instances initial product development, has been done by its initiator, Mr. James Brett, and others to test viability, demand, and pricing of pomegranate related products.