Srinagar: German ambassador, Dr. Martin Ney, along with delegates from German Embassy, Deutsche Gesellschaftfur Internationale Zusammensrbeit (GIZ), Bayer on Tuesday visited Ambri Apple Research Station of SKUAST-K at Pahnoo, Shopian and the main campus at Shalimar under the cooperation agreement ‘green innovation centres for the agriculture and food sector’ project.
In a statement issued here, varsity spokesman said that a team of scientists led by Vice Chancellor, SKUAST-Kashmir Prof. Nazeer Ahmad rafter receiving the visitors at the research station briefed them about the research programmes going on in apple varieties and joint initiative taken by Bayer, GIZ and University to test the weather station linked RIMpro model for forecasting and monitoring of apple scab, a serious disease of apple in Kashmir.
The statement added that later the German Ambassador visited the main campus of the university at Shalimar and held a delegation level meeting with the vice chancellor, officers of the university and the scientists of horticulture, biotechnology, plant pathology and weather agro based system.
VC spelled out the mandate and activities of the University’s research particularly in horticulture sector with special reference to forecasting and monitoring of apple scab disease and other diseases management practices, the statement added.
He also briefed the delegation about high density of apple plantation in the university and its take off at farmer’s level and initiatives of Government of J&K for promotion of high density apple plantation.
The German Ambassador appreciated the initiatives of the university scientists, GIZ and Bayer Crop Science in establishing the model and expected establishment of such models in other areas of the Valley, which shall benefit the farmers in terms of the productivity of quality apple which would be fit for export. He also expected strong triangular partnership between GIZ, Bayer and University in furthering this cause for the farmers benefit.
Dr. Martin also complimented the university in its activities in the areas of research in agriculture, horticulture and other areas. Vice Chancellor expressed the hope that the RIMPro model at Pahnoo is expected to boost apple industry by giving better scab control and higher returns.
Dr. Stephen Schmid, Senior Advisor, GIZ while interacting showed keen interest on scientist and students exchange programme under ongoing collaboration in different research and development activities. The other stakeholders in the meeting also spoke on the occasion. It was also decided that GIZ Bayer and University will hold one day Brainstorming session in coming months.