A collaboration between NIAB and the Scientific-Research Centre of Agriculture of Georgia will focus on the sharing of education and research in crop science.
The two research institutes have signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the establishment of a joint research programme. It will create opportunities for leading experts in the UK and Georgia to come together in areas of food security, crop science and biotechnology across the agricultural and horticultural sectors.
Activities will include the organisation of joint conferences and workshops, exchange of crop science students and researchers, and information sharing on research into increasing crop yields and improving disease and drought resistance.
The alliance follows a visit by Sophie Katsarava MBE, Georgian Ambassador to the UK, to NIAB’s East Malling site in Kent. Home to NIAB EMR, the UK’s largest horticultural R&D organisation, HE Katsarava met with NIAB Chief Executive Professor Mario Caccamo and Dr Nicola Harrison, Programme Director of the Growing Kent and Medway Innovation Cluster (see image).
Professor Caccamo said, “We are delighted to be part of this international collaboration to share, develop and improve crop science and technology across NIAB and SRCA. The focus on developing and supporting young researchers in their future careers in applied and fundamental research in crop agronomy and production, crop genetics and pathology is especially important to us as an organisation, and I look forward to welcoming students and postgraduates from Georgia to NIAB.”
HE Katsarava MBE said, “The UK is a strategic partner of Georgia with whom we share a long-standing partnership and sectoral cooperation. We have discussed opportunities to build new links between our agricultural sectors and to sign the MoU to further facilitate links and cooperation, creating opportunities for Georgian experts to partner and share experience and knowledge with UK researchers. For example I would like to see more Georgian quality products on UK supermarket shelves, including our fantastic Georgian wine, with 2021 the best year ever for Georgian wine exports to the UK. I would like to thank Professor Caccamo and his team for cooperation and readiness to support this important initiative.”
NIAB is the UK’s fastest growing crop science organisation, with rapidly expanding research capabilities in plant genetics, agronomy, farming systems and data science, the largest national field trials capability, and strong research links with industry, Government and academia. With headquarters in Cambridge, and regional offices across the country, employing more than 400 people across the UK, NIAB provides scientific research, technical services and practical advice to improve the yield, efficiency and resilience of crop production across the arable, forage and horticulture sectors.
LEPL Scientific-Research Agricultural Center (SRCA) was established in 2014 under the umbrella of the Ministry of Environment and Agriculture Georgia. The main aim of the agricultural research center is to promote food production and agricultural development through research and elaboration of innovative technologies, protection of agro-biodiversity etc. The SRCA has broad international connections with leading research centers in Europe and America and conducts targeted agricultural research with researchers from around the world in various agricultural fields. The current, and ongoing, research in the field of perennial crops (viticulture, fruit growing and agro-forestry ) is one of the important and accountable directions of the activity of the SRCA.
Address: 6,Marshal Gelovani ave, Tbilisi 0159, Georgia
Phone: 2 05 35 00
E-mail: info [at] srca.gov.ge