FAO in Georgia

Young agronomists learn modern agriculture with EU-FAO internship


Six young agronomists joined the fourth cycle of the internship programme implemented by FAO, under the EU-supported ENPARD programme. The interns are joining a six-month trainings programme based on practical fieldwork with lead farmers, under the supervision of FAO local and international agronomists.

The new cycle of the internship gathered agronomy faculty graduates and last year students, who are eager to gain essential practical experience in the field, learning about the cutting-edge, modern agriculture approaches and implementing them in the field.

Young agronomists have already started their training, visiting FAO Lead Farmer’s plot in Marneuli municipality. FAO agronomists and extensionists trained the interns in seedling production and transplantation, crop nutrition, drip irrigation and soil sampling. Topics of modern climate-smart agricultural solutions, integrated pest management and no-tillage technology in cereal production were also covered.

“This experience is invaluable, learning from FAO experts and farmers will give a significant boost for my future career in agronomy. I hope to be able to work in the field a lot, putting my theoretical knowledge to practical use,” stated Lika Takidze, a last-year student at the Agricultural University of Georgia, who just joined this EU-FAO internship programme.

A chance to work together with the farmers is the key focus of the programme. Each intern spends most of the time practicing directly with farmers working on FAO demonstration plots, implementing, and showcasing best agricultural methods and practices.

“All interns will have a chance to work in the field for six months, participating in all stages of plant production – from seedlings to the final harvest,” Rusudan Kobalia, FAO Extension Coordinator stated.

This is the fourth year of the internship programme under the ENPARD III project. As of now, 22 interns have joined this programme, and there will be another cycle of internship in the second half of 2022.

“Georgia urgently needs more young technical staff in the agricultural sector, such as agronomists, veterinarians or food technologists. With this internship programme, FAO and the EU are supporting the next generation of Georgian experts that will play a major role to improve the quantity, quality and sustainability of the agricultural sector for the next 40 years,” Javier Sanz Alvarez, EU-FAO Programme Coordinator stated.

The EU is supporting agriculture and rural development in Georgia through its ENPARD programme. Implemented since 2013 with a total budget of EUR 234.5 million, the main goal of ENPARD is to provide economic opportunities in rural areas and reduce poverty in Georgia. More information on ENPARD is available at: https://eu4georgia.eu/enpard/