Jerusalem (Jan. 16)
(Jewish Telegraphic Agency Mail Service)
An agricultural census taken during August, 1926, by the Department of Agricultural Colonization of the Palestine Zionist Executive shows that the 41 settlements wholly or partly financed by the Kerer. Hayesod in Palestine include 17 Kvuzoth (cooperative farms). girls training farms, 16 Moshave Ovdim (small holders’ villages), and 4 “middle class” settlements. The population of these settlements is 4,628.
Including the workers’ training groups and Yemenite quarters in the older Jewish villages, the total number of Jews on the land assisted by the Keren Hayesod comes to some 6,500, or more than one-fifth of the rural Jewish population.
More than one-half of the members of the Kvuzoth are between 25 and 29 years of age and have uved continuously in the respective groups since their establishment.
The 41 settlements in question cover an area of almost 100,000 dunams (25,000 acres). Five years ago only 16,700 dunams were under cultivation by Chaluzim. Almost 70,000 dunams or 70% are devoted to the growing of cereals, legumes, and vegetables, while 9.5%, or over 9,000 dunams, are devoted to fruit plantations and shade trees. Over 9,000 dunams lay fallow last year, while over 7,000 had not yet been brought under cultivation. More than 2,000 dunams of these lands serve as sites for houses and farm buildings.
The principal crops are wheat, barley, oats, and maize, barley giving the best yield per dunam with wheat the next best.
The census shows that there were 3,116 head of cattle in these settlements, of which 2,241 were thoroughbred or cross-breeds of Damascus, Beirut. Dutch and German stock, while only 875 were native. The working animals numbered 987. There were 38,710 heads of poultry and 887 bee-hives.
The Kvnzoth have 401 buildings most of them large, while the Moshavim have 1,635 buildings of the size required by the individual farms. The total of 2,036 structures includes 237 dwelling houses of stone, concrete or brick, and 452 stables of same materials.
The machines and agricultural instruments number 3,390, including 43 tractors and motors, 21 large threshing machines, 716 European ploughs, 309 harrows and 202 reapers.
For every thousand dunams in the Kvuzoth, the statistics show an average of 49 persons, 288 heads of cattle, 9 working animals, 25 heads of poultry, and 360 agricultural implements. For every thousand dunams in the Moshavim, there is an average of 57 persons, 47 heads of cattle, 14 working animals, 675 heads of poultry, and 500 agricultural instruments.