IICA and CIRAD renew agreement to drive the bioeconomy and agricultural innovation in Latin America and the Caribbean

Guy Henry, Research and Strategy Director of CIRAD, and Manuel Otero, Director General of IICA, concurred that the agreement marks a new chapter in the efforts to jointly establish a win-win agenda for the benefit of the agriculture sector in the hemisphere.

San Jose, 4 March 2020 (IICA). The Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) and the French Agricultural Research Centre for International Development (CIRAD) renewed their agreement to support public policymaking, innovation, technology transfer and the development of the bioeconomy in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Other areas of work will include sustainable area-based rural development, agroecology and the circular economy, as well as prospective analyses and sustainable agrifood systems.

The agreement was signed at IICA Headquarters in Costa Rica by Manuel Otero, Director General of the Institute, and Guy Henry, Research and Strategy Director of CIRAD.

Beverly Best, Director of External and Institutional Relations at IICA, and Federico Villarreal, Director of Technical Cooperation, were also in attendance.

“This agreement is of vital importance to continue driving, stimulating and fostering agricultural development and rural well-being through international technical cooperation of excellence. It is also a powerful symbol of the valuable joint work that the two institutions have carried out for the benefit of agriculture,” stated Otero.

Henry agreed with the Director General, explaining that the agreement marks a new chapter in the efforts to jointly establish a win-win agenda.

“We will conduct an analysis of comparative advantages to establish needs, common issues, and define what we can do to create cooperation initiatives together with other partners in the area,” he remarked.

As a result of the signing of the agreement, technical teams from both IICA and CIRAD participated in meetings to define priorities and areas of impact in the region.

IICA and CIRAD have been working together since 1989. One of the initiatives they have pursued jointly is the Regional Cooperative Program for the Technological Development and Modernization of Coffee Farming (PROMECAFÉ).

This program promotes modernization and sustainable development of coffee farming in Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Costa Rica, Panama, the Dominican Republic and Jamaica.

The organizations also promote the Central American Program for Integrated Coffee Rust Management (PROCAGICA), which seeks to strengthen integrated risk management in coffee farming in El Salvador, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama and the Dominican Republic.

A number of models for forecasting coffee leaf rust have been developed through PROCAGICA, as a means of issuing warnings and facilitating decision-making by coffee producers, national institutions and regional networks that conduct work for the benefit of this sector, its socio-economic context, as well as food and nutritional security.

Villarreal explained that the priority of IICA’s Directorate of Technical Cooperation will be to establish linkages, through researchers and technical capacities, to further enhance efforts to make conceptual contributions and develop innovative visions. It will also make available its intellectual capital in priority areas.

About IICAIICA is the specialized agency for agriculture in the Inter-American system, with a mission to encourage, promote and support its 34 Member States in their efforts to achieve agricultural development and rural well-being through international technical cooperation of excellence.

About CIRAD
CIRAD is a French agricultural research and international cooperation organization working for sustainable development in the tropical and Mediterranean regions. Together with its partners, it is responsible for generating and transmitting new knowledge to support innovation and agricultural development.

More information:
Federico Villarreal, Director of Technical Cooperation at IICA.
federico.villarreal@iica.int
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