Tuesday, April 12, 2011

ADB-IRRI collaboration showcased in New Delhi conference

Efforts to address pre and postharvest challenges in the rice supply chain, through a collaboration between the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), were showcased in a side session at the International Food and Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) Conference, “Leveraging Agriculture for Improving Health and Nutrition”, being held in the Taj Mahal Hotel, New Delhi, India last February 10-12, 2011.

The side session, titled “Pre and Postharvest Technologies: Keeping you healthy and rice bowls full”, featured the latest efforts and technologies on improving health and nutrition from the ADB-IRRI project titled, “Addressing the Pre and Postharvest Challenges in the Rice Supply Chain”.

 Dr. KL Heong and Engr. Martin Gummert, IRRI scientists and principal investigators of the project, mainstreamed the importance of improving rice pre-harvest and postharvest practices and management towards better nutrition and healthier life.

 The pre-harvest component of the project, spearheaded by Dr. KL Heong, promotes good management practices that maximize ecosystem services to prevent pest incidence growing into epidemic proportions, help reduce pesticide use and conserve biodiversity.

 Engr. Martin Gummert, lead investigator of the postharvest component, talked about good postharvest practices and technologies designed to minimize crop losses and increase grain quality.
The conference was attended by experts from renowned international organizations and advocates of agriculture, nutrition, and health to forge possible collaboration and linkages to enhance human well-being.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Cross country learning on combine harvesters commenced in Vietnam

Binh Dinh, Viet Nam- 11 Private and public sector officials from Cambodia flew in to Viet Nam to visit a combine contest organized by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development Binh Dinh province from 5 to 12 April 2011 and to attend the “Round Table Discussion on Rice Combine Harvesters” last April 10, 2011. This was initiated by the ADB Project “Strategic research on sustainable health and nutrition in Asia” to link the Cambodian project partners to the Vietnamese project partners and combine manufactures. Participating through this event would foster learning from two countries, establish links between the Vietnamese Combine manufacturing industry and combine users in Cambodia and help the Cambodians ramp up their postharvest initiatives.

The team was led by Mr. Alfred Schmidley from IRRI and Dr. Meas Pyseth from MAFF in Cambodia who linked the Cambodian collaborators to the Vietnamese organizers led by Dr. Pham Van Tan. Viet Nam is one of the countries who are in the forefront of promoting postharvest machinery development and commercialization in Southeast Asia. The activities included sharing of information on the Vietnamese combine harvesters, Viet Nam machineries and their mainstreaming efforts to leverage their postharvest initiatives in and outside their country.

Aside from being the ADB project collaborators, Cambodia and Viet Nam are also part of the Postharvest Learning Alliance member countries. .