‘Academia-industry nexus must for food security’

UAF VC discusses plans to establish citrus research centre

Our Correspondent May 10, 2024


Provincial Agriculture Minister Syed Muhammad Ashiq Hussain Shah emphasised the need for collaborative efforts among academia, industry and research institutes to tackle agricultural challenges and ensure food security for the growing population.

The minister chaired a meeting at the University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, discussing various agricultural issues.

Secretary Agriculture Punjab Iftikhar Ali Sahoo, UAF Vice Chancellor Dr Iqrar Ahmad Khan, and other dignitaries attended the session.

During the meeting, Minister Ashiq Hussain Shah underscored the government's commitment to agricultural development, highlighting ongoing initiatives to boost productivity and support farmers.

He commended UAF's contributions and expressed optimism about its role in advancing agriculture through scientific research and innovation.

The minister also mentioned plans for crop zoning and significant financial support, including interest-free loans and subsidies for agricultural equipment.

Agriculture Secretary Iftikhar Ali Sahoo addressed concerns about citrus farming, emphasising the importance of collaborative efforts between UAF and the Sargodha Citrus Institute.

He discussed potential initiatives to address issues such as citrus greening and proposed establishing citrus institutes in Layyah and Toba Tek Singh.

Sahoo stressed the need for incentivizing crop zoning to promote high-yield crops tailored to local environmental conditions.

UAF Vice Chancellor Dr Iqrar Ahmad Khan highlighted efforts to enhance citrus exports and strengthen ties with China.

He mentioned plans to establish a citrus research centre and a China Research Institute at the university to facilitate collaboration and promote agricultural development.

Dr Khan also emphasised UAF's growing international reputation, citing improvements in global rankings in agriculture and forestry over the past three years.

The meeting concluded with a renewed commitment to collaborative action and strategic planning to address agricultural challenges effectively.

The stakeholders expressed confidence in the university's ability to drive innovation and contribute to the sustainable development of the agriculture sector.

Published in The Express Tribune May 10th, 2024.


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