Samar Ibrahim

“There have been changes in my life and the women laborers’ lives. The income is certainly higher now. There is something new every day”

Egypt

Samar Ibrahim El Askary used to work in a citrus and grape export station in Egypt. Now she is a unit supervisor in a project designed to reduce food losses while generating new income from the country’s abundant tomato crop.

“Work here is good and going well,” says Samar, who comes from Abu El Matamir, Janaklis. She admits she’s had to adjust to spending so much time out in the sun after working in an air-conditioned space.

“There have been changes in my life and the women laborers’ lives. The income is certainly higher now. There is something new every day.”

This new role for Samar was made possible through an FAO activity on sundried tomato processing, which is part of a broader initiative aimed at reducing food loss and waste and boosting agricultural value-chain development in Egypt.

Egypt produces between 8.5 and 9 million tons of tomatoes annually and more than half are fully spoilt, or appear to be damaged by the time they reach consumers.

After being trained, Samar, in turn, has trained other women. Samar says many of the workers depend completely on the income from the food-processing project. All, she says, have learned new food-processing skills that they can use at home.

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