A 3-day conference on India-Israel agricultural cooperation the way forward took place at the Centre of Excellence for Vegetables in Dindigul, Tamil Nadu from June 19 to June 21, 2019.
This milestone activity, in which representatives of more than 16 states, progressive farmers, Government federal and State offices, experts and researchers took part, was initiated by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Government of India.
On the agenda was the way forward of the India-Israel cooperation in the field of agriculture, based on the 2018-2020 Indo-Israeli Agricultural Project Work Plan which was signed during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Israel in 2017.
MASHAV, Israel’s Agency for International Development Cooperation, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and the State Governments convened to maximize the impact on Indian farmers through the 28 Indo-Israel centers. The conference aimed to leverage the value chains and viability of the existing centers of excellence, discuss the way forward for the India-Israel cooperation in agriculture and explore new possibilities.
Ambassador of Israel to India, Dr. Ron Malka, gave the opening remarks during the conference, as did Mr. Gil Haskel, Head of MASHAV, Israel who arrived to India to participate in the discussions.
On the occasion of the conference Ambassador Malka remarked: “The success of our cooperation in making a real difference in farmers’ lives, as per Modi’s vision to double the farmers’ income, has already been proven. The next step in our growing partnership is moving from Project to Policy, expanding from centers of Excellence to areas of Excellence, Horticulture, Agriculture, Aquaculture, Dairy and more, as well as exploring partnerships with the private sector.”
The conference included an overview of the existing co-operation and perspectives for the future and a suggested model of enhancing CoE impact and upscaling the IIAP. This was followed by presentations of about the key crops currently in focus, in CoEs: Mango, Citrus, Pomegranate, Vegetables, Date Palm, Flowers and Drip Irrigation, Fertigation, best cultivation, Marketing & Post Harvest Methods (PHM). Finally, the day was concluded with discussion to define action items for the next steps.