IAMZ-CIHEAM, in collaboration with the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), has organized a training week from 8 to 12 April 2019 within the framework of the project titled “Mind the Gap: Improving Dissemination Strategies to increase Technology Adoption by Smallholders”.
The training was targeted to Tunisian professionals from extension services, ministry departments and research centres and focused on innovative extension methods, showcasing extension services models in Spain and innovation and technology transfer in the agricultural sector.
Participants were welcomed by IAMZ-CIHEAM Director, Javier Sierra, and had an introductory session on extension services models in Spain and innovation and technology transfer in the agriculture sector. Following this session, they visited ‘Oviragón’ sheep cooperative and learnt about benchmarking of cooperatives for the sustainable development of sheep and how to improve the profitability and quality of life of partners and collaborators. They heard from INTIA in Pamplona (Navarra’s Institute of Agrifood Transfer and Innovation) about agricultural holding management and applied research and transfer in the area of arable crops, and went on to visit Neiker facilities in Vitoria and listened to experts from the departments of animal production systems and plant health. Participants also visited IRTA FruitCentre in Lleida and several pilot plants (‘New technologies for fruit conservation’, ‘Classification, preparation and packaging of fruit’, ‘Development of minimally processed fruit -4th range’, ‘5th range fruit’ and ‘Domestication of microorganisms -Biocontrol Agents’). The last day was devoted to water management and irrigation, and researchers from EEAD-CSIC and CITA spoke about agroclimatology and water needs of crops, management of irrigation systems, management of irrigators’ associations, sustainable use of water and soil resources, environmental impact of agricultural activities and crop agronomy. The training week ended with a wrap-up session and a round table discussion, followed by a visit to the Aljafería Arab Palace.