One of the main problems encountered by animal feeding is the lack of raw materials of sufficient quality and quantity. This deficit is even greater in the case of particular commodities such as soybeans or corn, products which also see restricted their use due to the high likelihood of traces of GMOs produced by cross-contamination. This leads to depend on the import of organic raw materials brought from other countries, a fact which has serious repercussions on the sustainability of the local and global systems. In the first case, it undermines the economic sustainability as it raises production costs and, in the second case, it hampers environmental sustainability because soybean production has left a great ecological footprint in the productive process and transport. This issue is particularly relevant in the case of poultry.
AGAPA would like to participate as a partner in a project aimed at researching on new sources of food, able to supplement the deficiencies associated with traditional crops and thus expand the supply of raw materials with regard to the production of animal feed. This is the case of the use of proteins from alternative sources (insects, flour of animal origin, algae…) which are rich in essential amino acids and essentials for omnivores feeding.
Concerning the partnership, AGAPA would perform tasks for the transfer of results to the different actors involved in the value chain and even reaching certain consumers. Our continuous contact with the organic production sector makes it possible to identify new operators able to prove certain productive practices, in the field of organic livestock farming in general and of organic poultry farming, in particular.
From a methodological point of view, the identification of farms, in which the suitability of these alternatives can be evaluated in situ, and the technical productive monitoring can be carried out, seems to be indispensable as results would endorse those obtained at laboratory level. This is information is essential in the dissemination process of the results to other actors of the sector.
DESCRIPTION OF YOUR ORGANISATION:
AGAPA is a public agency that falls under the regional Government of Andalusia (Spain). It bases its activity on the development of policies related to the agricultural, livestock, fishing and rural development sectors which are of enormous importance both in EU policies and with regards to cooperation with third parties.
AGAPA has a wide presence in the Andalusian territory, with 123 offices distributed throughout the region and about 3,000 specialized workers (60% higher or medium technicians). In addition to the different headquarters located in each one of the 8 provinces of Andalusia, AGAPA manages the European Institute of Mediterranean food, the agri-food complex Hacienda de Quinto, and more than 5,000 ha. dedicated to farming in public estates. It also has:
• 59 District Agricultural Offices, in which there is an extensive knowledge of the territories in which they are located, their strengths, weaknesses, challenges faced and opportunities. They also play an important role in the promotion of innovation, advisory and transfer to the different subsectors
• 20 livestock and agricultural laboratories and oenological stations, and premises for quality control of fishery resources.
All this enables to boost the consolidation of the food industry and new emerging areas, as well as the modernization of the strategies developed by the agri-food production sector. This is coordinated together with the Regional Ministry of agriculture, fisheries and rural Development of Andalusia, as well as with the Andalusian Institute for agriculture and fisheries research and training, both institutions that fall under the regional Government of Andalusia.
Currently, the economies and societies worldwide are developing and promoting an international approach. Although local, regional and national approaches are still important, AGAPA already has more than 15 years of experience in the international scope and it is still committed to the contribution and participation outside our borders as an essential part of the activity of public organisations. In this sense, AGAPA intends to continue participating in international activities and projects addressing innovation, the efficiency in the use of resources, conservation of the environment, in direct relation with the sector, developing activities that generate impact and market orientation.
The previous activities developed and experience achieved by AGAPA concerning the international scope, as well as the challenges faced by the organisation, make that our main interest is focuses on the following programs and tools:
• European Territorial Cooperation Programs (POCTEP, Atlantic Area, SUDOE, INTERREG EUROPE, ENI CBC-MED)
• Program for Research and Innovation of the UE (Horizon 2020)
• Program for Environment (LIFE+)
• Opportunities offered by other European Union Funds (EAFRD or EMFF)
• Public Procurement for Innovation (PPI)
The main strengths of AGAPA are:
• a broad multidisciplinary technical human team composed by almost 3,000 qualified people
• more than 25 years of experience working in the sectors, and wide presence in the territory
• sufficient dimension, technology and resources
• huge capacity to contact with the private sector, both with the farmers and institutions that are part of it, as well as with businesses, agri-businesses in particular
• extensive knowledge of the relevant stakeholders in the agricultural sector in Andalusia
• great capacity to establish partnerships and dialogue with national and international bodies
• capacity to launch new innovative projects
AGAPA provides, in the same way, a relevant international experience gained through:
• participation as a partner in several projects of the framework programmes of R+D and Innovation of the EU, in the framework of the European Territorial Cooperation Programs of the EU, and of the EU LIFE+ Environment Programme
• execution of projects of international cooperation for development
• award of various tenders of the European Commission
• participation in specialized forums and networks
• participation through experts
• management of projects funded with European funds
The Partnership for Research and Innovation in the Mediterranean Area will devise new R&I approaches to improve water availability and sustainable agriculture production in a region heavily distressed by climate change, urbanisation and population growth
The PRIMA programme is an Art.185 initiative supported and funded under Horizon 2020, the European Union’s Framework Programme for Research and Innovation.