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Revival of the carob tree in Cyprus, what about Lebanon?

7-12-2017

After long years of neglect, the carob tree cultivation is being revived for its multiple health benefits. In its efforts to restore the abandoned tree in antiquity and as part of an all-out program to plant some 40,000 trees, Cyprus launched last week a huge campaign where it planted nearly 6 thousand carob trees. The project, carried out by the University of Cyprus in collaboration with Cyprus Agricultural Research Institute, aims to breathe new life into the traditional role of the Mediterranean island in producing carob. To recall, before World War 1, Cyprus was the third carob producer in Europe after Italy and Spain, with an output of 50,000 tons a year. The project seeks to bring back the culture of carob agriculture, particularly to enhance the local production of innovative carob foods and beverages aimed to create an alternative economic model. The president of Cyprus University heading the project, disclosed that tests are being conducted to develop new carob-based drinks and drugs given the carob’s beneficial properties, especially for digestion. She mentioned several attributes of the crop, notably that it is an organic substitute for cocoa and a key source for gluten-free wheat. (L’Orient Le Jour, November 27, 2017)

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