Conference on Innovations for Sustainable Production of Neglected and Underutilized Crop Species in the MENA Region
The MENA Regional Conference on Neglected and Underutilized Crop Species (NUS) is scheduled for February 5-6, 2024, in Rabat, Morocco, with a virtual component. Recognizing the potential of NUS in addressing malnutrition, hunger, and climate change impacts, the conference, organized by ICARDA, UM6P, and AgMIP-MENA, aims to overcome challenges like limited awareness and market access. The initiative aligns with global programs such as VACS (Vision for Adapted Crops and Soils) and AIM4C (Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate) and CGIAR initiatives such as Fragility to Resilience – CWANA Regional Integrated Initiative (F2R-CWANA), the Excellence in Agronomy Initiative, and the Climate Resilience Initiative, promoting climate-smart agriculture and sustainable food systems.
The conference signifies a crucial move to unlock the potential of Neglected and Underutilized Crop Species in the MENA region. It reflects a united effort to ensure a resilient, sustainable, and food-secure future through innovation and collaboration. It intends to foster collaboration, research, and policy initiatives, featuring keynote speeches from world renowned experts such as:
- Cynthia Rosenzweig, 2022 World Food Prize laureate, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies
- Rattan Lal, 2020 World Food Prize laureate, Ohio State University
- Pierre Thiam, Chef, culinary ambassador, social entrepreneur, and author
- Bernard Vanlauwe, Lead – CGIAR Excellence in Agronomy Initiative
- Faouzi Bekkaoui, Director of the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA) in Morocco
- Jacob Waslander, Dutch Envoy to the Middle East and North Africa for Water, Energy and Food
- P.V. Vara Prasad, Director – USAID Sustainable Intensification Innovation Lab, Kansas State University
- Kadambot Siddique, UN FAO Special Ambassador for the International Year of Pulses, University of Western Australia
For those interested in attending the conference and gaining insights, simply register here. Researchers interested in contributing are encouraged to register by submitting their abstracts by January 30, 2024.