Private Sector

FAO and Grupo TRAGSA of Spain join forces to fight illegal fishing and improve animal health and production systems

This collaboration will contribute to the development of small enterprises related to food processing in developing countries.

17/05/2016 - 

17 May 2016, Rome. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and Grupo TRAGSA signed today a Memorandum of Understanding forming a three-year partnership to jointly fight against illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing. Under the agreement, the parties’ will collaborate on the Global Record of Fishing Vessels, refrigerated transport and supply vessels, as well as capacity building for inspectors, traceability systems, and awareness raising campaigns.

Animal health and production is the second axis of this collaboration.  Both FAO and Grupo TRAGSA recognize that to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), livestock and food systems practices must be both sustainable and socially responsible. The joint cooperation is expected to contribute to the development and application of good practices for livestock management, promotion of information and tools to increase agriculture and animal productivity, and to the support of product traceability. These good practices, while contributing to food security, will also support the development of food value chain for small enterprises in developing countries.

This agreement contributes to making fisheries, agriculture and forestry more productive and sustainable, and enables an inclusive and efficient agricultural and food systems “in which Grupo TRAGSA's aggregated experience can provide a meaningful added value” said its President, Miguel Giménez de Córdoba during the signature ceremony. Noting further, FAO's Deputy Director-General Daniel J. Gustafson stated that “both organizations share a common interest to improve every single action towards reaching world food security.”

Technology for sustainability

Grupo TRAGSA has a mandate to ensure the sustainability of processes in agriculture, livestock, fisheries and forestry production. This means “every day we endeavour to contribute our technological and innovative capacities to sustainable production” added Giménez de Córdoba.

“We need interdisciplinary and innovative solutions, as well as sharing of scientific and technological progress,” said Gustafson, referring to the technical cooperation being established between FAO and Grupo TRAGSA.  In cooperation the partners will work together to facilitate the adoption of appropriate technology to support the sustainable intensification of agriculture, livestock, fisheries and forestry production in developing countries. 

Strategic partners

The initial focus of this partnership will be on improving synergies and coordination of the fisheries, agricultural and livestock sectors. Joint activities will be undertaken to deliver concrete contributions towards the achievement of the SDGs through implementation of development projects and programs. These first steps will open the door to new opportunities. “Now we have a favourable framework to make the most out of our compatible capabilities, which is essential to achieve the important goals we share,” stated Giménez de Córdoba.

Gustafson took the opportunity to recall the crucial role that the private sector plays in achieving the SDGs. In particular he noted the private sector’s role in the “contribution to the achievement of FAO’s Strategic Objectives in agriculture, fisheries and forestry, natural resources management and food value chain - from the farmer to the consumer.”


TRAGSA is the acronym for “Empresa de Transformación Agraria S.A. y la Empresa Tecnologías y Servicios Agrarios S.A.” It is a holding company belonging to Spain’s Sociedad Estatal de Participaciones Industriales (SEPI), with controls a 51% share of its capital.  SEPI is an entity under the Ministry of Agriculture and Environment of Spain.

The Group has more than 30 years of experience delivering integrated services on the execution of projects for governmental agencies in the following fields: rural development, environmental services, agricultural, forestry and fishery production. Grupo TRAGSA has collaborated in over 120 Spanish cooperation projects in more than 35 countries, which has resulted in knowledge, experience and technology transfer, thus contributing to the economic development of the beneficiary countries and communities.