IICA and the Pan-American Association of Veterinary Sciences join forces to fuel rural development in the region
San Jose, 29 September 2020 (IICA). The Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) and the Pan-American Association of Veterinary Sciences (PANVET) signed an agreement with the aim of strengthening rural and territorial development and the agriculture sector in the hemisphere, through research, innovation and capacity building.
The agreement is slated to last for four years, initially, was signed in a virtual meeting by President of PANVET, Macarena Vidal, and the Director General of IICA, Manuel Otero.
Both entities will undertake actions and projects in the area of agricultural competitiveness and productivity; the production of quality food; agricultural health and safety; environmental sustainability and risk management; and incentives for investment of resources and technological innovation in the production processes of rural communities in the Americas.
The President of PANVET explained that the agreement was extremely important to her Association, as it was the first one that it had signed with an inter-American organization, and would allow it to undertake preparatory and preventative actions to strengthen communities, as well as to contribute to public health and to rural and territorial matters, for the benefit of vulnerable populations, whose needs have increased due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Dr. Vidal remarked that, “We are interested in rural development and in forging synergies, particularly in the current context of the pandemic, which requires all our efforts to work towards protecting rurality, territoriality, equality and the work of small farmers, while providing technical support and capacity building, which IICA is already doing. We are extremely excited and look forward to working with you on rural development projects”.
Manuel Otero, who is a veterinarian himself, remarked that, “I commit to ensuring that this will be a fruitful partnership that will result in significant actions that will enhance the quality of life of rural communities, livestock producers, and of our people, in general.
The IICA Director General also stated that the partnership would promote the continued improvement of veterinary practices and pointed out the fundamental role that the profession plays in agriculture – ensuring animal health and well-being; the safety of products of animal origin; veterinary public health and livestock productivity, while facilitating trade in animals and products of animal origin.
“If we take into account the various branches of the livestock sector, the sector accounts for 40% of the value of global agricultural production and provides the means of subsistence and food security for almost 1 billion people. It is the means of subsistence of a large share of the rural men, women and children who are living in poverty. Practically 80% of the undernourished people of the world are rural inhabitants and most of them earn a living from agriculture, including livestock production, particularly family farming”, explained Otero.
The online event also included the participation of PANVET board members and delegates; the Association’s Vice-President, Francisco Suárez, who is also the Director of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Husbandry of the National Autonomous University of Mexico; as well as José de Jesús Palafox, President of the Mexican Federation of Veterinary and Zootechnic Colleges and Associations, among others.
PANVET is a non-profit association with a mission to serve the veterinary medicine profession in the Americas. It promotes agricultural development; the safety and security of products of animal origin; animal and human health; environmental management and sustainability, as well as the development of veterinary sciences, all for the benefit of society.
Institutional Communication Division.