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ICARDA’s partner-led research in lebanon

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30 May 2023, Lebanon: On May 22, 2023, ICARDA hosted a partner field day at Terbol Station at Bekaa Valley in Lebanon, where its cutting-edge dryland agri-research and innovations were on show.

For over four decades, ICARDA has generated game-changing dryland research and innovations toward resilient agri-food systems transformation that can help reduce rural poverty, increase food and nutrition security, and sustainably manage natural resources.

The field day demonstrated the success of the Lebanon research center in conserving plant genetic resources through its cutting-edge genebank to enhance the development of new, globally distributed resilient crop varieties such as bread wheat, durum wheat, barley, lentils, chickpeas, faba beans, and feed legumes. The field day also outlined ICARDA’s contribution to CGIAR’s Global Portfolio of Research Initiatives, such as the F2R-CWANA and Genebanks Initiatives that aim to create real and lasting impact in the specific settings where they are targeted.    

Dr. Michel Afram, Director of the Lebanese Agricultural Research Institute (LARI) and ICARDA Board Member, spoke on the importance of developing productive partnerships with ICARDA, and Dr. Hassan Machlab, ICARDA Country Manager for Lebanon, Jordan, and Palestine, outlined how ICARDA’s research activities in Lebanon contribute to global research on food systems transformation.

Attendees visited the center’s extensive research crop test fields to examine the latest developments in new climate-smart crop varieties. They were shown the latest technologies at ICARDA’s Genebank before being treated to a traditional lunch prepared by women cooperatives in Lebanon. The meal represented the full range of rich and diverse Lebanese cuisine, including dishes prepared with ingredients sourced by the cooperatives that ICARDA helps through improving quality certification and market access.

As climate change accelerates, global collaboration and knowledge sharing in agri-research have become primary drivers in generating food systems transformation, especially in the highly vulnerable, water-stressed drylands of CWANA. The resulting innovation and new technology on show at the field day prove what can be achieved when partners work together towards the same goal.

ICARDA Guests at the Event: 

  • Michel Afram, Director General, LARI and Board Member, ICARDA
  • Fidele Byiringiro, Economic Affairs Officer, ESCWA
  • Garabed Haroutunian, Bekaa Area Manager, UNDP
  • Kassem Jouni, Programme Policy Officer/Livelihoods, Agricultural Engineer, World Food Programme
  • Hart Ford, Regional Director for Middle East, ACTED
  • Madhumitha, Regional Environment Technical Coordinator, ACTED
  • Rania Hayek, Head of Import and Export, Lebanese Ministry of Agriculture
  • Rola Amil, Researcher, LARI
  • Nadine Nassif, Dean, Faculty of Agriculture, Lebanese University
  • Farah Kanj, Professor and Researcher, Faculty of Agriculture, Lebanese University
  • Lamis Chalak, Professor, Faculty of Agriculture, Lebanese University
  • Samar Azzi Achkouty, Head of Agriculture & Food Engineering Department, School of Engineering, Holy Spirit University of Kaslik
  • Naim Ouaini, Professor and Researcher, School of Engineering, Holy Spirit University of Kaslik
  • Marc Beyrouthy, CEO, Made By Nature

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