Minister of State with special responsibility for Research and Development, Farm Safety and New Market Development at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) Martin Heydon has announced in Hanoi during a trade mission that Irish and Vietnamese agri-food authorities will embark on a new phase of co-operation in agri-food from 2023, with Ireland working with Vietnamese and international counterparts to support Vietnam's journey in transforming its food system, according to a statement published on Gov.ie.
The co-operation programme, funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs, will involve a series of relationships between Irish and Vietnamese partners, including state agencies, universities and private sector over a period of five years, according to the statement published on Gov.ie, which noted that the objective is to support the country's food system transformation journey through joint research, capability-building, training and educational linkages, and that the programme will involve participation by Irish state agencies, universities and private sector.
The statement published on Gov.ie also noted that the programme will be managed by Sustainable Food Systems Ireland (SFSI), which i the technical co-operation provider established by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, and four other government agencies active in agri-food - Bord Bia, Enterprise Ireland, the Food Safety Authority of Ireland and Teagasc.
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Additionally, according to the statement published on Gov.ie, the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, through its support to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the UN, will provide funding support for a pilot project on resilient livelihoods for rural women in the Northern Mountainous Region of Vietnam, and this project will contribute to increasing access to resilient and sustainable agriculture value chains for ethnic minority women.
The statement published on Gov.ie quoted Minister Heydon as saying, "Ireland is committed to becoming a global leader in sustainable food systems, as outlined in the Food Vision strategy. This underpins our relationship with Vietnam. We will work with our counterparts to help Vietnam realise its own goals around economic, environmental and social sustainability in agri-food. This co-operation programme will feature knowledge sharing, innovation, education and joint research activities. It is an important part of Ireland's political, trade and economic relationships with this dynamic and fast-growing nation."
The Gov.ie statement also quoted Minister Heydon as saying, "In Ireland, our Food Vision 2030 strategy calls out the need to support the central role of women in our farming and food communities. I am very pleased that, building on our strong partnership with FAO, funding from my department will support the participation of rural women in farming and food businesses in Vietnam. The project has the potential to leave a lasting legacy by empowering rural women for generations to come."
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