Pushing forward on the agenda to take India-Israel cooperation in agriculture to the ”next level”, a third large delegation of 19 agricultural officers from seven different states in the India have concluded a two-week training program on horticulture management.
The program ”Horticulture Management: The Israeli Value Chain” was organized by the Mashav Agricultural Training Center (MATC) in Shefayim and the course focused on the possibility of replicating the ”chain of Israeli value”.
MASHAV, Israel’s Agency for International Development Cooperation working with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, seeks to provide developing countries with the best of Israel’s development and planning experience and has served as an important arm of the department’s diplomatic outreach program.
The delegation visited several Israeli nurseries to explore the possibility of importing planting material of Israeli varieties suitable for India in the field of horticulture. Field visits to various orchards, vegetable farms, packing houses and others formed an important component of the management course. Local experts gave lectures and made presentations on horticulture describing relevant activities based on Israeli know-how. ”Our partnership with Israel has continued to deepen and this visit has been useful in many ways. We learned fruit tree nursery protocol, orchard canopy management, post-harvest management of produce to reduce losses, productivity improvement all of which can help improve farmers’ incomes,” said Dr. Manoj Kumar Kundu, Deputy Director of Horticulture in the Government of Haryana. PTI.
”Israel is a leader in drip irrigation with fertigation techniques, and the local methods used here can play an important role in improving unit yield leading to the availability of more fruit for our population,” Kundu added.
Highlighting the understanding between the two governments on the development of 75 Villages of Excellence, the Haryana government officer said that 75 more have already been identified to bring the number to 150 and the government is committed to create 1,500 villages of excellence by 2025.
Most villages are approaching centers of excellence established with Israeli agricultural technology. Neighboring villages are encouraged to adopt the techniques taught in these centers.
Some 29 centers of excellence in several states are already operational and another 13 are in the development phase, Dr Kundu pointed out.
The delegation also participated in the 31st Annual International Agro-Mashov Exhibition for Agribusiness at the Jerusalem International Convention Center on September 6 as part of the two-week program. The program started on September 4 and ended on September 17. ‘The cultivation of avocado and pomegranate in Israel, which has attracted a lot of attention around the world, has also attracted the attention of visitors,’ Yair Eshel, agricultural adviser at the Israeli Embassy in New Delhi, accompanying the delegation, told PTI. It should be noted that eighteen agricultural officers from seven different states of India, engaged in Indo-Israeli centers of excellence, had already visited Israel in April to participate in a fifteen-day study program to learn about new approaches and technologies in the sector that can add more value for farmers. Agricultural officers from the Indo-Israeli Centers of Excellence (CoE) then participated in an in-depth state course, “Management of Centers of Excellence: Developing Value for Farmers”, also organized by the Agricultural Training Center of Mashav (MATC). Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Minister Narendra Singh Tomar also visited Israel in May and spoke of taking India-Israel cooperation in agriculture to the ‘next level’ , highlighting the agreement on the development of villages of excellence.
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