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Egypt arrests freekeh farmers amid wheat crisis 

May 17, 2022 at 8:48 am

Farmers harvest wheat to increase local wheat production in order to fill the wheat shortage in the country in Al Minufiyah, one of the important grain production centers of Egypt on 14 May 2022. [Mohamed Abdel Hamid – Anadolu Agency]

Egypt’s freekeh prices have risen greatly in recent weeks amid a countrywide wheat crisis.

Local media reported yesterday that police arrested two freekeh farmers for “forging prices.”

Since the outbreak of the Russian war on Ukraine, the Egyptian government has placed strict measures to control wheat production, sales and consumption, in attempt to prevent a national food crisis. Officials say that local authorities are prosecuting violators.

In recent days, the state-run supply directorate arrested 20 wheat farmers in the southern city of  Minya for “converting a massive amount of wheat into freekeh.” Other violators in Assiut governorate were convicted last month of “building unliscened bread shops without a permit.”

Freekeh, or farik, is a popular dish in Egyptian and North African cuisine. It is made from roasting the young, green grains of durum wheat.

READ: Egypt set to buy 500,000 tonnes of wheat from India