- Colombian private enterprise and the Center sign a framework cooperation agreement
31 August 2022. After a visit to CATIE (Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center) campus in Costa Rica, the PANACA Foundation signed a framework cooperation agreement with the Center, with the mutual interest of contributing to the training of farmers from Colombia and other Latin American countries, dedicated to agriculture and rural tourism.
The agreement was signed on August 30 by Muhammad Ibrahim, director general of CATIE, and Jorge Ballen, president and founder of PANACA. They were accompanied by Carlos Eduardo Campo, director of Strategic Alliances of the PANACA Foundation; Claudia Sepúlveda, coordinator of CATIE's Livestock and Environmental Management Unit (GAMMA); Astrid Pulido, researcher of the GAMMA Unit and CATIE liaison for Colombia; and Adriana Arciniegas, researcher of CATIE's Coffee and Cocoa Agro-forestry and Genetic Improvement Unit.
"We know that we are an entity that can help transform the Latin American countryside through learning-by-doing, the formation of the self and the resignification of the knowledge of the farmers; we can contribute from pragmatism, the practice in the field; while CATIE can contribute from the academic part and with its research. We can be managers of the link between research and farmers, so that research reaches the territory," said Ballen.
For his part, Ibrahim indicated that the focus of PANACA's work, which has developed a differentiated training model, centered on learning-by-doing, are values that coincide with those of CATIE.
"Although CATIE works at a more academic and research level, we see the complementarity between the two entities. In alliance we can transform, learn and also have an impact at scale. We hope that this agreement we are signing can not only generate knowledge, but also train leaders of change and promote entrepreneurship, with an agribusiness approach. In addition, I believe that CATIE and PANACA can identify joint proposals to seek funds to implement initiatives for Colombia and other countries in the region," said Ibrahim.
During PANACA's visit to CATIE, Mr. Ballen and Mr. Campo visited the Forest Seed Bank, a goat production module with agro-forestry practices, the international coffee and cocoa germplasm collections, the Botanical Garden and the good livestock and silvo-pastoral practices applied on the livestock farm.
They also had the opportunity to share a space with Eliécer Vargas, coordinator of the Master's Degree in Sustainable Tourism; Carlos Araya, director of Green Business Development, Resource Mobilization and Strategic Alliances; Luis Diego Jiménez, in charge of the Forest Seed Bank; Rolando Cerda, leader of the Coffee and Cocoa Agro-forestry and Genetic Improvement Unit; and Sepúlveda, from whom they learned more about CATIE's work.
This visit was carried out within the framework of the scaling-up actions of the Biodiversity and Sustainable Agro-forestry and Pastoral Livestock Landscapes project, known as BioPaSOS, and South-South Cooperation. BioPaSOS is implemented by CATIE, with the support of the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), in coordination with the National Commission for Knowledge and Use of Biodiversity (CONABIO, its Spanish acronym) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (AGRICULTURA), with funding from the International Climate Initiative (IKI) and together with multiple local partners in their territories of intervention, in the Mexican states of Chiapas, Jalisco and Campeche.
Biodiversity and Resilience Specialist
Livestock and Environmental Management Unit
Karla Salazar Leiva
Information Technology and Communication