MANAMA, Dec. 27 (Xinhua) -- "It's an opportunity for farmers to sell their agricultural products," said Ali Hassan, a Bahraini farmer planting figs and vegetables who is taking part in the Bahraini Farmers Market for the eighth year held in the north of the country.
Bahraini Farmers Market is an ambitious initiative to support farmers in marketing their products in an effort to protect the nation's agriculture.
The new season of the market was launched on Dec. 14 and will continue until April 2020. It opens to the public every Saturday in Budaiya, a coastal town famous for its farms and fertile farmland. The market attracts people from all over Bahrain and even neighboring countries especially Saudi Arabia.
Hassan told Xinhua that the beauty of the location and the nice weather are attractive points for the visitors, hoping the event could be extended to six months to help farmers tackle more challenges.
The eighth Farmers Market is not only a market selling vegetables and fruits but also has restaurants, entertainment activities and traditional handicrafts. It offers families the chance to meet and eat while enjoying the beauty of Bahrain's short winter.
"Although my farm is on rented land, I'm satisfied with the revenues because of the initiatives such as the Farmers Market," said Hassan.
Hussain Jaffar, another farmer who is taking part in the market for the sixth year, told Xinhua that the market can serve to sell the products of all participating farmers because of the high public demand.
However, he said the market which opens only once a week is not enough, urging the launch of more initiatives to promote local agricultural products against the competition from imported goods.
Hailing Bahraini farmers "national wealth," Amani Abu Idris, executive manager of the Bahraini Farmers Market, told Xinhua that the authorities are "committed to protecting this wealth by providing them with various kinds of support."
Idris revealed that this season's market attracts 38 farmers and four agriculture companies as farmers become more aware of using the market to promote their products.
"Farmers become more interested in retailing and learn to deal directly with customers and be creative in showcasing their products," she said.
In addition to the Bahraini Farmers Market, the King Hamad Prize was launched in 2012 and is awarded every two years to create a positive competitive environment among Bahrain's agricultural entrepreneurs, farmers and researchers in the agricultural field.