Opportunities for highland agriculture

February 12, 2012 at 7:32 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Experts from 10 countries helped identify research priorities to support agricultural development in dry highland areas

Research priorities have been identified, and an implementation framework agreed upon, for stimulating agricultural development in low-rainfall highland environments. Nearly 200 experts from 10 countries gathered at the 1st Regional Expert Meeting on Highland Agriculture, held recently in Karaj, Iran. The meeting looked at ways to resolve the main constraints to highland agriculture: low and unreliable rainfall, low crop productivity, high poverty levels, and rapid land degradation.

The discussions covered food crops, horticulture, water and land management, livestock, socioeconomics and other areas. Three sets of research priorities have been identified: Natural resource management and climate change adaptation, socio-economic and policy issues, and intensification of production systems. These will provide the framework for detailed research plans, currently being developed, for dry highland areas in Central Asia, West Asia and North Africa.

Participants at the meeting included H.E. M. Farhadi, Governor of Alborz Province; H.E. Dr J. Porhemmat, Deputy Minister of Jihad-e Agriculture; and representatives of several international organizations international organizations including FAO, CIMMYT, ICIMOD and ICARDA. The meeting was organized by two Iranian organizations ― the Agricultural Research Education and Extension Organization and the Seed and Plant Improvement Institute ― and ICARDA.

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