Beating the Competition

With access to capital, a Lebanese farmer watches his business grow

Badr is a 48-year-old father of six, is a Lebanese farmer who has grown and marketed organic vegetables in Akkar, North Lebanon for the past 25 years.

Due to political instability and recent bad weather conditions, it was becoming more difficult for Badr to sustain and grow his operations. Additionally, Badr was having increasing difficulty to channeling and distributing his harvest while competing with cheaper products from other markets.

Badr applied for a loan from the USAID-funded Lebanon Investment in Microfinance Program partner Vitas and obtained $2,300. Using the loan, Badr purchased plant nurseries for the coming season and built greenhouses. This has enabled him to diversify his products and increase his output. The greenhouses provide his customers with a diverse and steady quality of vegetables throughout the season.

Badr employed his son to support the greenhouses’ increased production. As a result of investing in greenhouses, the quality of his products improved which helped him market his organic vegetables. At the end of the second year, Badr’s monthly sales increased by 30 percent and the loan increased his monthly income by an additional $300. Badr pointed out that ‘the loan helped me increase profit which has resulted in improving my family’s livelihood.’ He deeply benefited from the investment and is considering applying for another loan to expand his business further.

The Lebanon Investment in Microfinance Program is awarded through the Volunteers for Economic Growth Alliance and funded by USAID. IESC implements the program in country.