on 17 July Joris Relaes, administrator general of ILVO, and Gonzalo Gutierres, Ambassador of Peru, signed the memorandum of Understanding between ILVO and INIA – Peru. The MOU makes scientific cooperation and exchange possible between the Flemish Research Institute for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and its Peruvian counterpart.
The past three years ILVO and INIA have been working together, mainly in the field of potato expertise. But the Peruvians felt a need to broaden the cooperation and expand the knowledge sharing. And this both in the regulatory-procedural area and in terms of research.
Ambassador Gutierres: “While the Peruvian economy used to rely primarily on mining, we see our agricultural production rapidly gaining importance in the last 20 years. For successful exports however, it is important to become competitive in terms of environmental and food safety requirements. Cooperation with a European center for agricultural and food research will help us to take steps forwards and achieve our goals."
The cooperation is also very interesting for ILVO as it gives access to the genetic databases for indigenous food crops such as quinoa, maize and potatoes.
The interest for cooperation regarding Smart Agri, Climate smart farming and organic farming is present with both parties but not yet included in the MOU. Administrator General Relaes: "We consider this cooperation -with a country outside Europe- also as a part of our strive for the Sustainable Development Goals."