STAFFORD, UNITED KINGDOM - AUGUST 09: A combine harvester gathers wheat in fields at the start of harvesting on August 9, 2010 in Chebsey near Stafford, United Kingdom. Wheat prices have risen 25% in the last seven days due to drought and grass fires across much of Europe and beyond. Russia has banned the export of grain as it tries to preserve stocks. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Tunisia expects the grain harvest in the governorate of Zaghouan this year to increase a gross number of 1 million quintals or above 42% of its precious harvest which was 703 thousand quintals last.

The Head of the Directorate of Plant Production at the Zaghouan Local Authority for Agricultural Development (CRDA), Ali Hammami, disclosing this noted that the area devoted to grain cultivation this time reached 65,500 hectares, including 545 ha under irrigation.

Expectations place the fodder production to hit an estimated 203 thousand tons against 120 thousand tons last season, Hammami noted.

Preparations for the harvest season are underway and the storage of cereals formed the focus of a working session held recently at the governorate seat in the presence of Zaghouan Governor Salah Mtiraoui and executives and representatives of the agricultural structures in the region.

Overall, the governorate of Zaghouan counts 12-grain collection centres with a storage capacity of 470 thousand quintals, contributing to 6% of the volume of grain stored nationally.