News: A Regional Multi-Actor seminar for the cultivation of avocado in Chania, Crete
Avocado growers and producers’ groups along with the local Directorate of Rural Development and Veterinary commented on the AgriLink2020 findings and suggested measures to improve the local advisory services. The seminar took place in the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute on Wednesday 4 November 2020 and was organized by Agricultural University of Athens (AUA)
The participants summarized their main points of concern as follows:
- Professional advice should be provided from advisors specialized in the cultivation of avocado and willing to engage in life-long learning.
- Reliable advisors are the independent ones; they should not be involved in inputs sales.
- Advisors should be dedicated to the provision of support to avocado growers and not be involved in farmers’ compliance with regulations.
- Collaboration among all stakeholders (i.e. researchers, advisors, farmers and packaging plants) is necessary for the advice to be updated and relevant to the needs of the market as well.
- The production of a popularized handbook on cultivation practices and soil conditions concerning the most widespread avocado varieties – based on updated knowledge and adapted to the needs of local farmers – is needed as well.
The participants recommended the establishment of a Collaborative Body, involving all local actors in undertaking concerted, concrete actions, which will help the avocado growers in three ways:
- First, it will facilitate the collaboration with research institutes in Greece and abroad and the generation of locally adapted knowledge.
- Second, it will contribute in the exploitation of funding opportunities concerning the cultivation (and beyond).
- Third, it will provide a framework for the provision of professional/ reliable advice and training. Such opportunities are included in the future CAP (2021-2027) Regulation and avocado Producers Groups should be able to take advantage of them.
Info and pictures: Eleni Zarokosta.