Israel intends to set up additional centres of excellence for fruits, vegetables and floriculture to establish a presence in ten Indian states by 2015, part of the research and development cooperation agreement the two countries signed in 2008.
Israel and India’s cooperative agreement is intended to a create a platform for combined agriculture research and development that will bring benefit to both countries.
Each of these new centres will focus on specific fruit and vegetable crops, with Israel providing the seeds and technologies to help grow new varieties of fruits and vegetables including cucumber, capsicum, mango, dates and herbs.
Thus far Israel has founded two centres, one for vegetables in Karnal and a second for fruit orchards in Sirsa, both of which have enjoyed considerable success and resulted in the decision to set up more.
The centres aim to demonstrate Israeli agriculture technologies and knowledge on the use of protected cultivation to local farmers, an approach which enables crops to grow outside of their conventional season through efficient water use and appropriate temperature control.
The Israeli economy minister Naftali Bennett visited the Centre of Excellence for Vegetables in Karnal on Tuesday 8th October and called it the best example of Indo-Israeli cooperation.
Bennett also told the Times of India that establishing more centres would increase productivity through efficient use of resources, chiefly water, and lower costs of agricultural activity for farmers throughout India.