Technical Assistance for Iraq INMA Agribusiness Program
In 2003, following a period of hyperinflation, widespread poverty, and malnutrition that devastated Iraq, the country began a period of reconstruction. As a major partner in the U.S. government’s reconstruction and development effort in Iraq, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) funded several programs, including the INMA (growth in Arabic) Agribusiness Program. Through INMA, Tetra Tech supported the implementation of large-scale agribusiness operations and established a pool of qualified private sector agribusiness owners to enhance agricultural productivity and contribute to Iraq’s economic development. Tetra Tech also supported production and marketing of high-demand, value-added agricultural products including fruit, vegetable, fish, poultry, beef, and lamb value chains.
As a subcontractor to the Louis Berger Group, Tetra Tech provided technical assistance to INMA’s Horticulture and Business Development Services units. Initially, Tetra Tech managed the greenhouse program. After successful implementation of this program, INMA selected Tetra Tech to lead the entire horticulture unit, helping improve local capacity in off-season vegetable, open field fruits and vegetable, and vineyard production, ultimately boosting productivity and business profitability.
Tetra Tech provided technical support throughout the project for demonstration sites—field-based learning centers—to train local farmers and agribusiness owners on nursery management and greenhouse care. We also implemented training of trainers, a program to foster local sustainability of project initiatives. In addition, we further supported training and capacity building through the implementation of activities like the farmer field schools. These schools provided ongoing, hands-on and peer-based learning that fostered farmer group development. Eight field-based learning centers served as agricultural demonstration sites for crop and livestock production, including farm mechanization. In conjunction with the farmer field schools, the packing house program built appropriate processing and storage facilities, which strengthened linkages between farmers and packing houses and generated higher returns for farmers.
As part of the INMA program implementation team, Tetra Tech helped generate more than $105 million in agricultural sales, create more than 14,000 new jobs, increase the annual household income of workers in agriculture-related positions by approximately $2,000, and generate $6 million in additional capital for financial institutions in eight of Iraq’s provinces.
The team also helped 237 commercial orchards and vineyards plant 156,000 trees and vines and trained 11,000 farmers in greenhouse, orchard, vineyard, and irrigation management. We established five packing sheds with cold storage units, which increased total processing capacity by 150 tons per day. In addition, the program established 4,000 greenhouses that spanned across 200 hectares. To increase capacity building, Tetra Tech also conducted 60 business development seminars, 114 roundtables, and 12 conferences that discussed training, enterprise and private sector development, marketing, business planning, and institutional capacity building.