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Agro Industry



  • The Agro-Industrial sector is a major contributor to the Lebanese economy: In 2015 (latest available figures), it generated an estimated 32.03% of the Industrial sector output and around 4.5% of the country's GDP, with an estimated size of 1.98 USD billion1.
  • It currently has an estimated workforce of 20,607 and accounts for 25% of the Industrial sector workforce. It is considered as such the largest employer in the industrial sector.
  • It is the largest employer in the industrial sector.
  • Agro-food enterprises account for the largest share of industrial establishments in Lebanon, with 21.8% of enterprises - or around 963 companies - involved in agro-industrial activities.
  • The sector is predominantly composed of small family-owned enterprises, employing 6 workers on average.
  • Agro-food products accounted for 17% of total exports in 2017 and for 21.1% of total industrial exports in 2017, and the CAGR of agro-food exports stood at 4.6 % between 2012 and 2017.
  • Key exported agro-food products include Sugars & Sugar Confectionary at 30.5% of total agro-food exports, Beverages, Spirits & Vinegar occupy the second largest share at 18.7%, followed by Miscellaneous Edible Preparations at 14.8 % and Prepared Vegetables, Fruits, and Nuts at 13%.
  • The largest share of agro-food exports are destined to Arab countries (non-GCC countries), which grasped 49.7% of total share in 2017 and with 37.1.4% of them were dispatched to Syria and7.6% to Iraq.
  • In 2017, 21.7% of exports were shipped to GCC Countries with Saudi Arabia importing the most from Lebanon with 7.9%, followed by UAE and Kuwait with40 % and 3.6% respectively. Europe ranked 3rd with a share of 11.6% and Africa occupied the 4th place with 7.3% of total agro-food exports.
  • Exports to Syria have been increasing at a CAGR of 18.99% between 2013 and 2017 and now constitute around 76.7% of total exports to Arab Countries (excluding GCC countries), while exports to Iraq have decreased by 14.38% between 2013 and 2017 due to the closure of the Syrian-Jordanian Borders. This indicates that while the Syrian crisis has had its share of negative impact on the Lebanese economy, it has allowed for increased demand on Lebanese products to compensate the decrease in Syrian exports in these markets.




  • Availability of a cheap and skilled labor force.
  • Presence of backward linkages with a solid and diversified agricultural sector.
  • Institutional support from the government: Institutions available for testing a R&D (including 3 Labs) and a vocational school specialized in food industries.
  • Presence of an internationally recognized Lebanese cuisine.




  • Olive Oil: opportunities exist in the production of extra virgin olive oil from new varieties of olive such as Barnea (Senolia), Frantoio and other olive varieties obtained through new breeding techniques. Also, Flavored olive oils with different herbs and spices are becoming popular and represents a good investment opportunity in the Lebanese market.
  • Dairy Products: the availability of livestock in the country paves the way for important investment opportunities in this sector mainly in manufacturing organic dairy products such as flavored milks and dairy snacks.
  • Wine: the high quality of soil in many regions in Lebanon allows for a flourishing wine industry and the future success for the Lebanese wine in international markets dictates a shift towards high quality wine catering to a sophisticated audience.


Source: 1 Lebanese National Accounts 2004-2015

Agro-Food Investment Incentives
Investment Opportunities in the Agro-Food sector 2016
Industry Operational Licenses
Useful Addresses
Get in Touch
Lazarieh Tower, 4th Floor, Emir Bechir Street, Riad El-Solh Beirut, Lebanon, P.O.Box 113-7251
+961 1 983306
+961 1 983302