Aug 9, 2018

Vacancy - Assistant de projet- Smart Agriculture





La Chambre d'Agriculture recrute un Assistant de Projet pour Smart Agriculture. Le recrutement du présent poste se fait dans l’objectif de faciliter le travail entrepris par le FAREI dans le cadre de l’animation des deux sous-réseaux de planteurs, et faciliter les échanges d’informations entre le FAREI et la MCA. Il sera donc encadré par un responsable du projet à la MCA et devra assister et organiser les réunions du projet entre MCA et FAREI.

Compétences recherchées :

- Aptitudes relationnelles, capacité à communiquer facilement
- Capacité et volonté de travailler en équipe
- Capacités rédactionnelles
- Aisance informatique : logiciels bureautiques basiques et bases de données
- Rigueur et autonomie
- Connaissances de bases en agroécologie, et intérêt pour le sujet
- Connaissances en agriculture tropicale (légumes, problématiques rencontrées…)
Niveau scolaire : BSc en agriculture

Cliquer ici pour des informations supplementaires

Pour plus de détails merci d’envoyer votre candidature (CV et lettre de motivation) à vacancy.mca@gmail.com avant le 22 août 2018.

Jun 26, 2018

Visit by Ms Elvina Smith, Lecturer from CUT, South Africa

"Ms Elvina Smith, Lecturer, Central University of Technology (CUT), Bloemfontein, Free State, South Africa, was at the Faculty of Agriculture, from the 18th June 2018 to 25th June 2018, in the context of her PhD study on entrepreneurship education in the field of environmental health, food hygiene and safety. During her visit, Ms Elvina Smith interviewed academics and students of the Faculty of Agriculture. She also had the opportunity to meet the Senior Management of the University of Mauritius, the Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture and key informants from external organisations in the public and private sectors. Ms Elvina Smith delivered a very "enterprising" presentation entitled "Higher Education: South Africa, Sweden and Mauritius, a road towards entrepreneurship", on Monday 25 June 2018 at the Faculty of Agriculture. The aim of her research is to learn from entrepreneurship education in South Africa, Sweden and Mauritius to develop an alternate syllabus in food safety to contribute to improved job skills and innovative ways to address unemployment."

Contributor: Mrs Esha Aumjaud, Faculty of Agriculture














Aquaponics : an alternative and sustainable technology for farming

In the Budget 2018-19, the Minister of Finance Pravind Jugnauth announced that the government will provide funds for the sensitisation and training of households in aquaponics for the production of water adaptive vegetables in freshwater ponds and basins and that the Albion Fisheries Research Centre will provide fish fingerlings freely for the aquaponics projects. Aquaponics is considered as an alternative and sustainable technology for the Mauritian farming industry and an economic alternative for the importation of food crops. Stakeholders share with News on Sunday their views on the feasibility of the measure announced and how to promote Aquaponics in Mauritius.

Sunita Facknath, Professor in Sustainable Agriculture at the University of Mauritius: “The measure must be accompanied by local research to determine the right type of aquaponics”

sunita
What are your views about the measure announced in the Budget?
It will help in increasing the share of animal protein in people’s diet, and fish is a good and healthy source of protein and good cholesterol. People will also have fresh and healthy vegetables grown in the aquaponics system.It is also an environmentally friendly way to increase food production while making optimum use of available water, of available space, growing vegetables with little or no fertilisers added, and avoiding the pollution caused by dumping effluent water from aquaculture into the environment.
Do you believe that this measure is sufficient enough to promote aquaponics?
The training and awareness-raising is a start. For it to bear the envisaged fruits, it must be accompanied by local research to determine the right type of aquaponics. There are several ways in which aquaponics can be set up. We need to determine which set-up and type is most suitable for different purposes in the Mauritian context. We need to determine the appropriate conditions, in terms of the water quality, the species and type of vegetables and fish which can be grown in such systems, the number of fish that can be placed in a given size of tank, the safety aspects of the vegetables and fish in the aquaponics system, among others.
What additional measures do you believe should be introduced and why?
In the near future, other measures will have to be considered - establishment of standards and norms for the quality of vegetables and fish emanating from aquaponics, registration of aquaponic businesses for traceability purposes, subsidies on the inputs required, fiscal incentives to those practicing aquaponics as a business, training of extension staff so they can provide right advice and guidance to those practicing aquaponics, and so on.
The Faculty of Agriculture of the University of Mauritius is currently working on a research project on aquaponics, to determine the optimum water quality, species of vegetables and fish to grow together in the aquaponics system, the appropriate density of the fish, the right filter quality, and other similar parameters. This project will provide the necessary data to help us establish a bigger, field level aquaponics unit, and we will be looking for partners in the public and private sectors to partner with us on this bigger project. Source; News On Sunday 23 June 2018

Jun 20, 2018

Tackling Climate Change in Agriculture: Approaches to climate change adaptation and climate smart agriculture in SADC

Mauritius TrainingThis week  CCARDESA in collaboration with the University of Mauritius is implementing a regional training course on Tackling climate change in agriculture: approaches to climate change adaptation in agriculture and climate smart agriculture. The training was officially launched by Professor Dhanjay Jhurry, CSK, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Mauritius. In his opening speech, he highlighted climate change as major concern not only to the agricultural sector in Mauritius. Prof. Jhurry reminded the audience that the world needs to shift to a more sustainable use of resources to reduce GHG and thus protect the biodiversity of the planet. This requires more investment for research and development. He emphasised the importance of strengthening the capacity of all stakeholders in the Mauritius agricultural sector to respond to the challenges posed by climate change.

 

Associate Professor Daneshwar Puchooa, Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture of the University of Mauritius in his opening speech remarked on climate-smart agriculture as a key approach to increasing agricultural production in the context of climate change. The Faculty of Agriculture (FoA) therefore strives to prepare their graduates and stakeholders from society for the science and private sector and updates its programmes to meet the needs. Finally, Dr Wiebke Foerch, programme officer for the SADC programme on adaptation to climate change in rural areas in southern Africa (ACCRA), has been representing CCARDESA at this event. She highlighted the impacts of climate change on agriculture in the SADC Region and elaborated on the SADC Regional Agricultural Policy, which provides the policy framework for climate change adaptation and mitigation in the agriculture sector and calls for policy harmonisation with national policies.

 

The training is being implemented by the University of Mauritius in collaboration with CCARDESA and with support of the German Development Cooperation (GIZ). The objective is to strengthen the capacity of the SADC member states for climate change adaptation in agriculture and climate smart agriculture. It is a 5-day training of agriculture research and extension officers from FAREI, research officers from the University of Mauritius, and agro-business representatives. The training brings together technical expertise with the Integrating Climate Change Adaptation into Development Co-operation Climate Proofing Tool, as well as a field excursion and interactive group work.

 

To learn more about the CCARDESA training package on Tackling climate change in agriculture, click here. To see previous CCARDESA trainings, visit here. To learn more about the Training in Mauritius, stay tuned.


This article was written by  Dr Wiebke Foerch. Dr Foerch is a Programme officer for the SADC programme on adaptation to climate change in rural areas in southern Africa (ACCRA) which is being implemented by CCARDESA in collaboration with GIZ.

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Jun 15, 2018

GRADUATION CEREMONY FOR THE DIPLOMA IN FORESTRY AND FISHERIES IN RODRIGUES - 2018



The first batch of students of the Diploma in Forestry and Fisheries, which was launched in 2016, graduated on the 11 June 2018 after 2 years of study. The graduation ceremony was held at the Mon Plaisir Cultural Centre, Rodrigues and was attended by the Chancellor, Dr J.C. Autrey, the Vice Chancellor, Prof D. Jhurry and other officials of the University.

Training Agenda “Tackling Climate Change in Agriculture: Approaches to Adaptation and Climate Smart Agriculture in the SADC Region”


Jun 11, 2018

GLOBAL SOIL PARTNERSHIP Plenary Assembly - Sixth Session 2018,




Prof B. Lalljee at the FAO headquarters, June 2018

The Global Soil Partnership Plenary Assembly (PA) constitutes the main venue where all GSP partners come together to make important decisions about the global soil agenda. Prof B.Lalljee of the Faculty of Agriculture, University of Mauritius, is the representative of Maurtius at the 6th PA of the Global Soil Partnership being held at FAO headquarters in Rome from 11 to 13 June 2018

May 23, 2018

World Bee Day 2018 - Protecting the Pollinators

The United Nations General Assembly adopted by consensus a resolution declaring 20 May as World Bee Day. Every year on this day, the attention of the global public will be drawn to the importance of preserving bees and other pollinators. People will be reminded of the importance of bees for the entire humanity and invited to take concrete action to preserve and protect them.


This week marks the first-ever observance of World Bee Day, courtesy of the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). World Bee Day spotlights the indispensable role that bees play in the global food system and raises awareness for the current threats that bee populations face from climate change and industrial agriculture.

Beyond honey, bees contribute to the production of 87 different food crops by acting as pollinators and stimulating plants to produce their strawberries, tomatoes, or coffee beans. Due to climate change and the impact of pesticides from industrial agriculture, the habitats for many bee populations have declined dramatically in the last twenty years, which could indicate a crisis for food systems globally. Greater awareness for this issue is leading to important work from organizations such as FAO, the Pollinators Partnership, and the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.

Cet insecte dont les vertus sont connues depuis la nuit des temps sont menacées de disparition à cause des pesticides. À Maurice, même si la situation n'est pas alarmante, il est vital de protéger cet insecte qui est considéré comme étant crucial pour l’écosystème. Dans le cycle de la pollinisation, les abeilles produisent du miel et participent à la production des fruits et des légumes. Ce qui explique pourquoi les autorités encouragent l’apiculture et offrent même une formation dans ce domaine.

New Pesticide Use Bill



Le Pesticide Use Bill sera introduit le mardi 22 mai en première lecture à l'Assemblée nationale. Le Pesticide Use Bill sera introduit le mardi 22 mai en première lecture à l'Assemblée nationale. Le but étant d’offrir aux Mauriciens une alimentation saine. Avec la promulgation de cette loi, certains pesticides seront interdits et la production de légumes et fruits bio, seront favorisés. Le Food and Agricultural Research and Extension Institute, FAREI, a démarré une campagne de sensibilisation auprès des planteurs depuis plusieurs mois. Des séances de formation ont aussi lieu pour prôner une meilleure utilisation de pesticides. Si certains planteurs sont sceptiques quant aux répercussions de ce projet de loi, d'autres sont enthousiastes.

FOOD ACT, 1998 - AMENDEMENTS



Maurice fait partie des pays les mieux structurés en Afrique en ce qui concerne la sûreté alimentaire selon l'expert français de la FAO Didier Montet. Il a animé un atelier de travail à l’Hôtel Voilà Bagatelle a l'intention des cadres du ministère de l’Agro-industrie et de la Santé. L'objectif a terme est de proposer des recommandations pour amender la Food Act datant de 1998 pour éliminer les risques d'intoxication alimentaires a Maurice.

Reportage : Kavin Tapesar, MBC TV

May 11, 2018

SUSTAINABLE AGRICUTURE AT SONGHAI FARM, BENIN




Government is committed to encourage the practice of organic farming among other methods of agricultural production with modern and intelligent techniques hence reducing the use of pesticides and other chemical inputs for a healthier nation.

The Minister of Agro-Industry and Food Security, Mr Mahen Kumar Seeruttun, made this statement yesterday during the opening of a workshop on Organic Farming based on the Songhai Model organised by the Ministry of Agro-Industry and Food Security in collaboration with the Songhai Center at the Holiday Inn Hotel, Plaine Magnien.

Minister Seeruttun dwelt on the importance of the workshop which is being held at an opportune time when Government is working towards finalising the Pesticides Use Bill, before its presentation into the National Assembly. He recalled the set objectives of his Ministry to ensure healthier and safer agricultural products to the population in addition to making the agricultural sector more resilient to the effects of climate change.

He also spoke of the various incentives to encourage youth to seize opportunities in the agricultural sector which he said will help address the shortcomings in this sector which in turn will contribute towards ensuring food security to all. On this score, he recalled the inauguration of the Young Entrepreneurs Sheltered Farming Park project for young graduates which he said will be replicated in other parts of the country.

The Agro Industry Minister also called for a concerted effort of the private sector to make of the agricultural sector more modern, productive, profitable, respectful of nature and above all, healthier to the population. He concluded by expressing confidence that with the collaboration of the Songhai Center, Mauritius will become a model in the Indian Ocean region with regards to organic farming.
The workshop was being held in presence of Father Godfrey Nzamujo as resource person. Father Godfrey Nzamujo is the founder and director of the Songhai Centre, a pioneering farm, training and research centre in Porto Novo, Benin. The latter is in Mauritius to share his know-how and his experience in the field of organic agriculture and entrepreneurship and also help Mauritius pave the way to be competitive and profitable in today's world, while respecting the environment and adapting to climate change.