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For Immediate Release
March 11, 2004

Reviving Iraq's Date Orchards
Iraq Fact of the Day

Iraq's Ministry of Agriculture is establishing 18 new date palm nurseries. The goal is for Iraq to regain its dominant position in the international date market. Once the largest source of date palm tree orchards in the world, half of Iraq's 30 million trees were destroyed during the Iran-Iraq war and the previous regime's draining of the southern marshes. Dates are of symbolic importance to Iraqis and rank as one of the country's leading exports.

Source: U.S. Agency for International Development

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