Hanoi, Vietnam – Partners and stakeholders from the different country sites of Food Resilience Through Root and Tuber Crops in Upland and Coastal Communities of the Asia-Pacific (FoodSTART+) converge for the 2nd Partners’ Meeting on 8-11 May 2017. FoodSTART+ project partners present in the meeting were representatives from Megha-LAMP in India, SRPD in Vietnam, and FishCORAL and INREMP both from the Philippines. IFAD Country Programme Officers from the Philippines and Vietnam were also present during the meeting. Other stakeholders present were representatives from CIP Lima, CIAT Vietnam, IAARD from Indonesia, Visayas State University – Philipine Rootcrop Research and Training Center, and CIRAD.
The Partners’ Meeting was organized to review the results of the scoping studies from target site; present and discuss FoodSTART+ project and country updates; develop, review and refine collaborative workplans of FoodSTART+ with IFAD investment projects; hold the second meeting of the project’s Steering Committee; conduct learning visits on opportunities for adding value to roots and tubers; and provide an overview of on-going research on root and tuber crops in Vietnam.
The 3-day activity kick-started with learning visits to a supermarket and wet market in Hanoi to give the participants a glimpse with business and marketing in Vietnam, followed by a visit and orientation of the Root Crop Research and Development Center (RCRDC) of the Field Crops Research Institute (FRCI).
The Partners’ Meeting proper commenced on the second day. Results of the scopings studies in the primary FoodSTART+ sites – India, Indonesia, Vietnam, Philippines, China and Myanmar – were presented. Opportunities for RTCs and updates on the collaboration with IFAD investment projects in the primary project sites were also presented. Furthermore, opportunities for RTCs beyond the primary target sites were also narrated, such as the Nutrition Sensitive Value Chain project in Indonesia.
Cross-cutting project activities, i.e. GIS mapping, resilience indicators development, gender and social dimensions, and engagements with IFAD investment projects and country offices were discussed on the third day. The FoodSTART+ steering committee had also conducted a separate meeting. At the end of the whole activity, the project and its IFAD investment project partners have developed, reviewed, and refined their collaborative workplans for mid-2017 to 2018 which will serve as the guide for activities under the partnership.
Two follow-up activities were slated after the 2nd Partners’ Meeting: representatives from Megha-LAMP and the Mizoram governemnt in India had a Training and Learning Visit on Sweetpotato Silage and Use of Other RTCs Residues for Animal Feeding in Yen Bai province while a CIAT-led cross-learning visit to CCAFS/CIAT climate smart village approach in northern Vietnam of CIP-FoodSTART+ staff and partners from SRDP, INREMP and IAARD also happened on May 11-12, 2017.
Guada Marie Babilonia