With no rainy seasons and hardly any ground water, one wouldn’t expect to hear Kuwait has a cultivated area of 8000 hectors and has many annual crops! The change was made possible by the successive attempts of the erstwhile rulers of Kuwait who were good visionaries.
Kuwait has a desert climate characterized by a long, dry, hot summer, with temperatures reaching more than 45 °C with frequent sandstorms, and a cooler winter, with temperatures sometimes even falling below 4 °C. The rainy season extends from October to May. Over an area of about 100 km² annual rainfall is less than 100 mm, while in the remaining part it varies between 100 and 300 mm. The long-term average annual rainfall for the whole country is about 121 mm. In recent years rainfall has varied between 106 and 134 mm/year
Despite the absence of rivers and streams, and the paucity of rain, the development of agriculture has been actively pursued. The government apportions arable land at nominal prices on a long-term basis among farmers to stimulate production of vegetable and other crops. It also provides farmers with long-term loans and low-cost irrigation. The state has supplied extension services and demonstration centers for new farming techniques in the attempt to increase agricultural production. Crop production lands of Kuwait are located in: i) the Al Wafra area near the southern border where there are an estimated 1 495 farms that cover a total area of 10 000 ha; ii) the Al Abdali area near the northern border that contains 810 farms in a total area estimated at 20 000 ha; and iii) the Al Sulaibia agricultural area in the center of the country, where the soil is much better, as it is deep with a sandy texture, good drainage characteristics and good airing and without salt, hard pans or impermeable layers; the number of productive farms in this area, covering an area of about 5 000 ha, is estimated at 68, including 13 vegetable and crop farms, about 70 cattle farms, 4 sheep/goat farms, and 10 poultry farms.
In Sulaibia Farm Area, workers at Kuwait United Dairy Farm, Kuwait’s biggest, start their day at 5 am, by feeding and milking the cows. All keep one mantra in their mind: “Hygiene is the most important thing”. First the cows are washed and cleaned; then attached with milking machines. Protecting and feeding the animals is a big part of the symbiotic relationship between the animals and the workers. The milking and processing take place close together at the dairy farm. Animals are fed with alfalfa, corn, barley etc as per a specific timetable. When the cows are ready, the milkers at each parlor start milking the cows every 8 hours. Each cow produces 10 to 18 kilos of milk a time.; a cow can produce up to 40 kg of milk a day. Raw milk is sold to Kuwait Dairy Company (KD Cow). Samples of milk are tested, and a veterinary clinic in Sulaibia makes sure that the cows are free of diseases; the milk is then transported to its main factory, Kuwaiti Dairy Co, where the same is pasteurized, a process that heats milk then quickly cools it to ensure the elimination of harmful bacteria, while retaining good bacteria.
The Farm began operations in 1961. Kuwait United Dairy Company was formed in 1985, Pioneered by reputed Kuwaiti families of Abdul Aziz Al-Qatami, Yusuf Al-Homaizi and Zaid Al-Khalid. As of now it has about 3,000 heads of cattle, 1,700 of them are milk cows. The farm produces 35 tons of concentrated milk in winter and 25 Tons in Summer. The farm is now being further modernized under the leadership of Eng. Rakan H. Kharisat the new General Manager. The farm has 80 employees and 8 in the management. KUDC workers are highly experienced. The farm imports cows from Germany. Calves born at the farm are delivered by professional veterinarians, who take care of their health by maintaining a special file for every cow since birth. Calves are placed with their mothers in specially equipped cages, and male calves are sold during the first two weeks of birth. The milking is completely computerized according to the latest farm technologies, and the cows are fed by automatic foragers.