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Capacity Building in Improving Virgin Olive Oil Quality and Safety in Morocco: Lessons from FoSaMed at the Med Forum for PhDs and Young Researchers

                 

The Erasmus+ Capacity Building project FoSaMed is looking forward to attending the 4TH MEDITERRANEAN FORUM for PhD Students and Young Researchers which will take place in Chania, Crete, Greece, on December 4-7, 2022.

The Forum is organized by the CIHEAM – Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Chania under the aegis of the CIHEAM headquarters in Paris.

The MEDFORUM is becoming known as an interdisciplinary symposium in the agricultural sciences that provides opportunities for the exchange of knowledge, expertise, and ideas, as well as great networking. At the MEDFORUM, a wide array of scientific disciplines merge together and intersect with recent developments in agricultural, horticultural and forestry sciences that affect  the agro-food sector, rural development and sustainability in the Mediterranean basin and beyond.

The forum welcomes PhD students, young researchers, scientists, teachers and students as well as professionals in the agricultural and horticultural industry to establish new collaborations and contacts as they present and discuss their findings. The conference will comprise plenary and regular sessions, in addition to a display of posters.

In the framework of the thematic session dedicated to “Agricultural and agroforestry innovations and technologies”, the FoSaMed partners will be honoured to present a study entitled “Capacity Building in Improving Virgin Olive Oil Quality and Safety in Morocco: Lessons from FOSAMED Erasmus + Project”.

Altough Morocco has traditionally been a land of olive tree cultivation and olive oil production, there are still existing constraints that slow down the development of this sector. FoSaMed emerged in this context to improve capacity and to develop and implement a joint Master’s degree on Food Safety among four universities in Morocco. While the first year has a common curriculum, the second year is a different specialization in each of the partner instutions. The National Agricultural School of Meknès (ENA) will offer a specialisation in virgin olive oil safety through strengthening the capacities and enriching the practical skills of Moroccan students in the sectors of olive growing management and virgin olive oil production so that they can integrate the concepts of virgin olive oil agri-food chain productivity, efficiency, and sustainability in their work.

This paper describes the structure of this capacity-building project, the feasibility, and challenges faced, as well as its potential impact in supporting the sustainable development of the Moroccan virgin olive oil sector in addition to assess the sustainability of the Master programme on the long run and involving a larger target public.

FoSaMed is enthousiastic about this opportunity and honoured to have the possibility to share its findings with a wider audience for academic and scientific progress. There is no result that does not come from shared knowledge, and FoSaMed stands for a quality education and safe agri-food systems.

For more information on the FoSaMed Master have a look at www.fosamed.eu/the-fosamed-master

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