The development of the agricultural sector in Georgia is tightly linked to the competences of the agronomists in the country. Six young agronomy students and undergraduates from four Georgian regions were chosen under the EU-supported FAO project under ENPARD III, to join the paid internship programme and enhance their skills in agronomy.
Young agronomists from Adjara, Imereti, Guria, and Tbilisi joined the third cycle of the internship programme which allows the students to learn from the best local and international FAO professionals in the field and work alongside Georgian farmers, beneficiaries of FAO programmes, gaining invaluable practical experience.
Trainings for the interns covering the topics of modern climate-smart agricultural approaches, soil analysis, integrated pest management, seedling production and transplantation, crop nutrition, drip irrigation and no-tillage technology in cereal production Alongside the learning seasons in-doors, intern teams spend most of their time practicing directly with farmers in the FAO demonstration plots.
As an example, a greenhouse in the Koghoto village of the Akhmeta municipality was selected to demonstrate the young agronomists how to install the drip irrigation system, take the samples for soil test analyses, participate in the seedling production and document the activities.
“Back in my university we had few opportunities to participate in the actual field work and perform practical exercises. I think it is crucial to learn while working the land and learn from the experts, this will definitely help me in the future,” one of the interns, Ana Chikovani said.
This is the third year of the internship programme under the FAO-EU project. As of now, the total amount of the interns who completed the programme is 16. Starting with their training, FAO interns, during their one-year internship support Georgian farmers in the introduction of modern agricultural methods and best practices.
“It is very important to incorporate youth, with a new mentality and new background, in FAO and the EU efforts to make Georgian agriculture more sustainable and more environmentally-friendly. We hope that our interns, while working with the farmers in the field, will gradually contribute to making agriculture more productive and successful,” FAO Agronomist and Capacity Development Specialist, Alan Pineda stated.
The EU is supporting agricultural and rural development in Georgia through its ENPARD Programme. Implemented since 2013 with a total budget of EUR 234.5 million, the main goal of ENPARD is to reduce rural poverty in Georgia. More information on ENPARD is available at: www.enpard.ge