FAO Response to the Syria Crisis: A call for increased support in agriculture [EN/AR]


Mar 2016

FAO’s role and presence in Syria

FAO is working with partners to strengthen food security and build the resilience of households, communities and institutions in Syria and neighbouring IraqJordanLebanon and Turkey. By integrating relief and development activities, FAO’s resilience building efforts save livelihoods while helping communities lay the foundations for their own longer-term recovery.

Agriculture has a pivotal role to play in addressing many facets of the crisis. This includes protecting and restoring food security, employment, economic growth, natural resources and social cohesion. FAO’s top priority is to help the most vulnerable families improve their access to food, nutrition and income.

For example:

  • Seed assistance enables Syrian farmers to harvest sufficient cereals to feed their families for a year.
  • Cash-for-work programmes create income opportunities while repairing critical on-farm infrastructure.
  • Veterinary support and vaccination campaigns in Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria preserve livestock health and vital sources of nutrition.
  • Backyard food production kits give displaced and host families the means to produce nutrient-rich foods, such as eggs, milk and vegetables, with quick turnaround.


Maintaining food production amidst conflict is critical. In Syria, where the agriculture sector has been fragmented by violence, support to small-scale family-level production is increasingly important. In addition to saving livelihoods, agricultural interventions increase local food availability, access and variety, while boosting incomes and reducing dependence on external aid.

Since 2011, FAO has supported the livelihoods of more than 1.9 million Syrians (324 323 families) in rural and peri-urban areas of Aleppo, Al-Hassakeh, Ar-Raqqa, Dara’a, Deir-ez-Zor, Hama, Homs, Idleb, Rural Damascus, Sweida and Quinetra.

Main areas of support include:

  • Wheat and barley seeds for winter cereal production
  • Vegetable production kits
  • Micro-gardens for displaced families
  • Poultry production packages
  • Animal feed, sheep restocking and veterinary services
  • Rehabilitation of solar-powered irrigation networks
  • Food security and agriculture sector needs analysis and coordination