Minister of state for the diaspora and international development, Joe McHugh, and Teagasc director Gerry Boyle signed the agreement which aims to further strengthen the ongoing collaboration.
The Irish Aid-Teagasc partnership has grown in recent years to include collaboration both at the national and global levels and in a number of Ireland’s development partner countries, including Mozambique, Ethiopia, Vietnam, Kenya, and Tanzania.
M McHugh said Irish Aid remains deeply committed to supporting developing countries to end poverty and hunger.
“Research and innovation are vital for farmers everywhere,” he said. “But a major challenge in increasing agricultural productivity in Africa is getting the right knowledge to the people who need it, at the right time and in the right way.
“By teaming up with Teagasc, we in Irish Aid can harness our skills, research, and expertise, and share this knowledge with Ireland’s key partner countries through our development co-operation programme “Productive and sustainable agriculture practices will be crucial to meeting the challenges of climate change, food security, and eradicating hunger.”
Prof Boyle said Teagasc has a responsibility to support the national effort to strengthen agricultural development and tackle hunger and under-nutrition in under-developed places.
“This objective is best pursued by aligning and co-ordinating our efforts and resources with those of the Irish Aid programme,” said Prof Boyle.
He said previous achievements under the collaboration include research and provision of support for potato production by smallholder farmers in Ethiopia, and training of Ministry of Agriculture staff from Kenya and Ethiopia.
The collaboration has also worked to establish the Irish Forum for International Agricultural Development, bringing together all of the national stakeholders involved in international agriculture.
“There is a growing recognition and appreciation of Teagasc’s research and expertise and under this new agreement a number of extra countries will benefit from this collaboration,” he said.