USAID-supported olive research center inaugurated in Pakistan

09:13 PM | 25 Oct, 2019
USAID-supported olive research center inaugurated in Pakistan

RAWALPINDI - The recently completed Center of Excellence for Olive Research and Training (CEFORT) with the collaboration of the USAID was inaugurated at the Barani Agricultural Research Institute (BARI) in Chakwal on Friday.

It was inaugurated during the National Olive Festival held at the BARI in Chakwal where Mission Director of USAID program Jholi Julie Koenen was invited as the chief guest.

The new research and innovation facility will increase olive production and employment opportunities. The two-day event also featured the installation of a U.S.-funded mobile olive oil extraction unit designed to increase efficiency and affordability for small farmers.

Bringing together farmers, processors, and stakeholders from Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkwa, Balochistan, and Azad Jammu & Kashmir, these efforts highlight the huge potential of the olive sector.

“USAID is proud to partner with the Punjab Government in this journey of transforming the Potohar region,” stated USAID Mission Director Julie Koenen.

“The Ministry of National Food Security and Research and Punjab Agriculture Department, with support from development partners, are working toward realizing the promise this sector holds for contribution to the country’s agricultural economy, private sector investments, and jobs. CEFORT will support scientific and technical research and serve as a resource center in the region,” said Federal Secretary Muhammad Hashim Popalzai.

This initiative is a collaboration between BARI, the Punjab Agriculture Department, USAID’s Punjab Enabling Environment Project (PEEP), and the Pakistan Agricultural Research Council.  USAID’s (PEEP) is a seven-year investment to enhance private sector-led growth in the horticulture, livestock and dairy sub-sectors of Punjab through policy reform advocacy as well as human and institutional capacity development