Tobacco growers operating in the Akkar district of Lebanon are calling on the government to allow them to expand their harvested areas while increasing the weight of tobacco authorized per permit from 330 kg to 500 kg, according to a story on Al Bawaba.com.
“We also ask the government to increase the price of 1 kg from LL10,000 to LL12,000 to help farmers in covering their living expenses,” said Abdel Hamid Sakr, head of a syndicate of tobacco farmers in the north of the country.
Sakr said farmers in Akkar were relying on tobacco to make up for their losses after the export of other agricultural products was blocked with the closure of the Nassib border crossing in April. Nassib was the last functioning border crossing between Jordan and Syria.
“Tobacco farming is our only hope for the time being, but it costs us a lot because it needs special pesticides and the cost of irrigation is too high, in addition to the elevated cost of labor,” farmer Youssef Ahmed was quoted as saying.
According to Wikipedia, the name Akkar is derived from the Syriac word, Akkare, meaning farmers.