Vanuatu to benefit from Israeli Agricultural Trainings

By Godwin Ligo

Vanuatu is among the Pacific Island countries that will benefit from Agriculture Trainings conducted through the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Jerusalem.

“Following the Pacific Leaders’ summit with Israel’s President, Reuven Rivlin, in Nadi on February 20, 2020 and its concluding declaration of the Israel – Pacific Food Security Alliance (IPFSA), we are most delighted to launch the program on 21st of January 2021 together with my colleagues from Mashav (Israeli International Technical Cooperation) and with the Pacific Island’s professional participants,” Israeli Ambassador to the Pacific Island countries, Dr. Tibor Shalev Schlosser, expressed from Jerusalem.

“This program will be a first virtual intensive Israeli training on agricultural extension for intensive vegetable production for the entire Pacific Island region.

“It will be dedicated to meeting the challenges and the special climate and land conditions of the Pacific islands.”

According to Ambassador Tibor, the training will include 30 weekly online meetings (25/1/21 to 16/8/21) and the knowledge gained will provide participants tools that will enable them to transfer new Israeli technical, agricultural know-how to the farmers in the different islands.

“We, the Israel Foreign Ministry, Mashav and the special training team, are very glad to start this unique and useful program, being able to avoid the COVID 19 global restrictions,” he said.

“We wish all the participants much success. We trust that it would support the sustainable development of the agriculture in the islands and that it would promote food security in the pacific region.”

Agricultural extension and advisory services play a crucial role in increasing agricultural productivity, improving food security, ensuring rural livelihoods, and promoting agriculture as an engine of pro-poor economic growth.

Farmers view extension as a form of assistance intended to improve their productivity, and profitability, thereby contributing to the wellbeing of their family, community, and society.

To the field extension agent, agricultural extension comprise a variety of training and advisory methods and tools designed to enhance and accelerate the spread of useful know-how and technologies to rural people.

The ultimate goal is the transfer of technology and know-how as essential “inputs” into efficient modern farming.

Israel is a world leader in agricultural technology and particularly in agricultural development under challenging climatic, geographical and political conditions.

Much of Israel’s achievement in this field may be attributed to the close cooperation and ongoing collaboration that exist between agricultural research, extension, farmers and the country’s various agricultural industries.

The agricultural extension service ensures a continuous flow of information from research to farmers and from farmers back to research – thereby providing guidance and training for the Israeli farmer, but also participating actively in field research and the creation of knowledge.

This regional training program on agricultural extension methods and tools is the first major activity to take place within the framework of the IPFSA program.

It aims to share with participants the principles and methods of agricultural extension, specifically for vegetable production, taking into consideration the adaptability of various methods to meet local conditions in the participating countries.

The knowledge gained will provide participants — operators of the demo plots and other extension professionals — tools that will enable them to transfer new technical, agricultural know-how to the farmers in the different islands.

The final projects of the different national teams will be to present an extension plan to diffuse the new technologies implemented in the demo plot.

Vanuatu was represented during the Israeli President’s visit to the Pacific Islands in Fiji by former Minister of Internal Affairs, Andrew Napuat.