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Central Asia and the Caucasus (CAC) Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting 9 August 2006 Tashkent, Uzbekistan The Center The World Vegetable Center is ...

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CAC-PFU

Proceedings of the

Central Asia and the Caucasus (CAC)

Vegetable R&D Network

First Steering Committee Meeting

9 August 2006

Tashkent, Uzbekistan

The Center

The World Vegetable Center is the leading international nonprofit research

and development institute committed to alleviating poverty and malnutrition

in the developing world through the improved production and consumption

of safe vegetables.

Published by

AVRDC - The World Vegetable Center P.O. Box 42 Shanhua, Tainan 74199

TAIWAN

Tel: +886 6 583 7801 Fax: +886 6 583 0009 Email: info@worldveg.org Web: www.avrdc.org AVRDC Publication: 08-704 ISBN 92-9058-166-2 Editors: Warwick Easdown, Maureen Mecozzi Cover: Chen Ming-che Suggested citation AVRDC - The World Vegetable Center. 2008. Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R & D Network First Steering Committee Meeting, Tashkent, Uzbekistan. 9 August 2006. AVRDC - The World Vegetable Center, Shanhua, Taiwan. AVRDC Publication 08-704. 120 pp.

Proceedings of the Central Asia and the Caucasus (CAC) Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting

CONTENTS

Foreword Program Country Reports Agreement Participants Impressions Acronyms Map 1 ()

K

FOREWORD

A strong vegetable production sector can improve food security and nutrition in Central Asia and the Caucasus (CAC). To promote vegetable production and consumption, a workshop on Improved Income and Nutrition in Central Asia and the Caucasus through Enhanced Market- and Trade-oriented Vegetable Systems Research and Development was conducted in Tashkent, Uzbekistan on 25-27 April 2005. Workshop participants reviewed recent developments in the vegetable system, gained a comprehensive understanding of the research and development priorities in each CAC country and in the region as a whole, suggested strategies for collaborative vegetable research, and proposed research subject areas and action plans to present to national governments and donors.

In an extensive discussion, CAC participants resolved to formalize a network for research and development in the region. The network will foster partnerships to tackle problems of regional importance. It will also help develop collaborative linkages and reinforce the quality of research.





The following directions were suggested for joint research:

Germplasm collection, exchange and management Expansion of nontraditional and indigenous vegetables Adoption of promising varieties and appropriate technologies Monitoring systems for diseases and pests GAP and IPM to ensure quality and safe products Improved seed systems for OP and hybrid varieties Strategies to improve value-added processing and export marketing Capacity building to advance joint research National coordinators for vegetable systems research were officially appointed by each CAC government in 2005-2006. On 9 August 2006 the first CAC Vegetable R&D Network Steering Committee Meeting for Central Asia and the Caucasus (CAC) was held in Tashkent.

This meeting was organized by AVRDC-The World Vegetable Center and its CAC Regional office with assistance from the Program Facilitation Unit (PFU) of the CGIAR Program for CAC. Dr. George Kuo, AVRDC Director for International Cooperation, and Dr. Ravza Mavlyanova, AVRDC Regional Coordinator for CAC, were the conveners. The national coordinators from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan presented reports on vegetable research and development in their countries and discussed issues of common interest with leading researches, heads of research institutes, and company representatives.

Meeting participants reviewed the draft CAC vegetable network framework and a collaborative research agenda. After careful deliberation, the eight national coordinators officially signed the Agreement in the Framework of the Working Program for the Central Asia and Caucasus Regional Network for Vegetable Systems Research and Development (CACVEG) to formalize the network.

The agreement stipulates that the national representatives will serve as the networks steering committee, and asks AVRDC to serve as the networks executive agency. The executive agency liaises among member countries, the steering committee, CGIAR-CAC, NGOs, and the private sector. AVRDCs CAC regional office will coordinate all activity and will work closely with national coordinators to promote vegetable systems research and development in the region.

2 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting

PROGRAM

Wednesday 9 August 08:30-09:00 Registration Session l Chair: Dr. Ravza Mavlyanova Rapporteur: Acad. Jamin Akimaliev 09:00-09:0 Welcome remarks - Dr. A. Khanazarov, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Water Management, Director General of the Uzbek Scientific-Production Center for Agriculture (presented by Dr. R. Paroda, Head of PFU-CAC (presented by Acad. M. Dr. Ravza Mavlyanova, AVRDC-CAC Regional Coordinator 09:30-09:50 AVRDCs regional vegetable network strategies 09:50-10:00 Discussion 10:00-10:0 Group photo and coffee break Session ll Chair: Prof. Batir Azimov Rapporteur: Dr. Geldi Goshaev 10:0-10:50 Country report: Armenia 10:50-11:10 Country report: Azerbaijan 11:10-11:0 Country report: Georgia 11:0-12:00 Discussion Session lll Chair: Dr. Gayane Martirosyan Rapporteurs: Dr. Fuad Mamedov and Dr. Natalya Kakabadze 1:00-1:20 Country report: Kazakhstan 1:20-1:40 Country report: Kyrgyzstan 1:40-14:00 Country report: Tajikistan 14:00-14:20 Country report: Turkmenistan 14:20-14:40 Country report: Uzbekistan Session lV Chair: Dr. Ravza Mavlyanova Rapporteur: Dr. Temirjan Aytbayev 15:0-17:00 General discussion 4 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting

COUNTRY REPORTS





Armenia - Dr. Gayane Matirosyan Introduction In the Republic of Armenia vegetable production is one of the leading agricultural enterprises. The population of Armenia is 3.2 million with 64.2% in urban areas and 35.8% in rural areas.

According to 2003 data, annual vegetable consumption per capita was 218.1 kg, which corresponds to a consumption of 597.7 g/day or 144 kcal/day. This indicator includes fresh, dried and processed vegetables (Statistic Bulletin of Armenia).

At the second Armenian Agricultural Forum held 22-23 September 2006 in Yerevan, Mr. D. Lokyan, the Armenian Minister of Agriculture, outlined the achievements in agriculture since it has become a government priority. The opening and commissioning of new canneries, improvements in living standards and trade liberalization have all had a positive impact on the development of the vegetable production sector and agriculture in general.

National policy in the vegetable production sector Research and development projects in the vegetable production sector are coordinated, planned and funded by the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Education and Science. Laws related to the protection of selections, seeds and plant protection and quarantine have been enacted in the republic.

In 2005 the gross agricultural output in the republic reached AMD 493 million; an increase of 11.2% compared to 2004. The gross output of vegetable production in 2005 was AMD 288 million: an increase of 14.9% over 2004 levels (National Statistics Service of Armenia). The growth in vegetable production was mainly due to an increase in the gross yield of fruits and berries, grapes and melon crops.

In 2005 the gross yield of fruits and berries increased by 201,600 tonnes, which was almost 2.8 times the production level for the preceding year. Vegetable production increased by 63,000 tonnes or 10.5%, and melon crops by 4900 tonnes or 4.3%. In 2005, the total vegetable crop area in the republic was 22,200 ha, and melon crops accounted for 4030 ha (Tables 1 and 2).

Factors constraining vegetable production Production is constrained by a number of factors. The average size of vegetable producing farms doesnt exceed 0.5 1 ha, and this limits the advanced technologies that can be introduced. A scarcity of irrigation water is the main limiting factor in vegetable and melon crop cultivation and early spring and autumn frosts are also high risk factors. Lack of effective railway transportation also obstructs the export of perishable vegetables, and high transportation costs mean that vegetable exports are not profitable.

Table 1 Cultivated area, yield and gross output of vegetable crops, in marses * Table 2 Cultivated area, yield and gross output of melon crops, in marses * *Source: Food Security and Poverty. January June 2006. Yerevan, National Statistic Service of the Republic of Armenia, Statistic Bulletin  Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting State registration of vegetable crop varieties The registration of vegetable crop varieties and their seed production in Armenia are regulated by the National Seed Law adopted on May 20, 2005. This law applies to domestic and imported seeds, intended for agricultural cultivation and reproduction.

The Seed Law of the Republic of Armenia specifies mandatory approval of the crop list by the Seeds Service for compulsory patenting and registration. This law covers the procedures for variety registration, their inclusion in the state variety testing trials as well as exclusion from the Registry;

licensing of seed approvals, the procedure for licensing, and the import and export of seed. Specially trained seed approval officers who have passed the exam designated by the special commission established by the Ministry for Agriculture carry out seed licensing and approval procedures.

Only promising plant varieties that have passed state testing and have been listed in the registry of varieties released for cultivation can be propagated and used within Armenia.

Vegetable seed production Following the privatization of seed producing farms in the republic, vegetable and melon seed production dropped dramatically. Approximately 75 tonnes of seeds are required for over 26, ha of vegetable and melon crops cultivated in the republic. This seed demand is met by imports, and a small amount of seed production in the private sector. Seed production of local vegetable and melon varieties is mainly carried out by the Scientific Centre for Vegetable, Melon and Industrial Crops (SCVMIC), where a total of only 5 ha of seed producing crops are grown, annually producing between 75-150 kg of seeds of tomato, eggplant, pepper, cucumber, bean, okra, squash, pumpkin, watermelon and melons.

Due to land privatization and the small size of the republic, spatial isolation for pure seed production is becoming impossible to attain. The republic does not have the required machinery for seed separation and cleanup, and the need for better seed treatment and packaging is crucial. Due to a lack of funds, the SCVMIC is not able to purchase modern machinery for seed treatment (granulation and dressing) and packaging. This places the Centre in a very unfavorable situation in the seed market.

Resources The main research activities on vegetable production and personnel training are carried out at SCVMIC, Gyumri selection station, the Scientific Centre for Crop Husbandry and Plant Protection, as well as in the Agrarian University of Armenia. Activities are implemented in close collaboration with the Seed Service and the Plant Quarantine and Protection Service. All these institutions are under the Ministry of Agriculture.

More than 50 people, including 29 scientists, are working in SCVMIC. The Gyumri selection station deals with the selection, seed production and cultivation technologies for crops such as carrot, cabbage, table beet and bean. SCVMIC is also collaborating with the Agricultural College whose students are training in the various departments of the Centre. Students in the vegetable production department of the State University gain training at the Center and develop term papers and theses through SCVMIC.

National program and research Research activities are mainly funded by the state through basic, scheduled and targeted sources of funding. Basic funding is provided by the Ministry of Agriculture, and targeted funding by the Ministry of Education and Science. Basic and targeted funding programs are for 1 to 3 years.

The Ministry of Agriculture has provided USD 20,000 funding for a three-year program that covers selection, primary seed breeding, development of cultivation technologies and introduction of new vegetable and melon varieties and hybrids grown in the open field and under shelter. The programs key objective is to establish new, high quality varieties and hybrids of vegetable and melon crops that are adapted to the various climatic conditions of the republic and its growing seasons. The program will also establish primary seed breeding and the development of improved vegetable cultivation under field and protected conditions. Priority crops are tomato, pepper, eggplant, onion, melon, water melon, cucumber, squash and pumpkin.

Two other topical three-year programs are also being implemented:

1. Application of bioengineering methods in heterotic selection of solanaceous vegetable crops: With an annual budget of USD 3800 five scientists are involved in this program to apply in vitro methods to solanaceous crop selection.

2. Development of new vegetable varieties and hybrids under sheltered conditions and development and introduction of enabling technologies for small-capacity cultivation:

The annual budget is USD 5700 and involves six scientists. The program objective is to establish indeterminate varieties of tomato and pepper for greenhouse cultivation, and to survey available technologies for smallholder cultivation.

A national program for conservation of the genebank at the Scientific Centre has been approved along with participation in the international database ECP/GR. Both will provide opportunities for joint activities with foreign researchers.

Research funding is insufficient and low salaries do not attract young specialists to work in scientific institutions. The lack of funding limits the purchase of new technologies, equipment, chemicals and agricultural machinery as well as limiting collaborative opportunities with foreign institutes.

The countrys principle projects in vegetable production field are carried out by SCVMIC. Research is carried out at the Centres farms, located in the Darakert settlement, on an area of 21 hectares. Old indigenous varieties of tomato, pepper, eggplant and melon crops are maintained and analyzed in the Centres collections and used in selection programs. The varieties and hybrids of tomato grown include Lusaber, Ranniy Nush, Sofi, Gandzak and Novyi Anait-351. Those of pepper include Ayk, Nush-83, Arevaam, Nush-55 and Ani; eggplant Armavir; bean - Margara, Massiyskaya vegetable and Zara; melon Arpi; watermelon Arevik and the pumpkin variety Ararati vardaguyn.

Partnerships The SCVMIC is working in partnership with other national research institutes, the private sector and farmers and institutes in other CIS countries. In conjunction with the Research Institute for 8 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Toxicology and Hygiene it is conducting research activities on the use of residues from Yerevan decontamination station wastewater. Aeration, application methods and the impact of the dosage of recycled residues on different vegetable crops are being tested at SCVMIC, while the content of heavy metals and pathogenic organisms in the soil is being studied by the Research Institute for Toxicology and Hygiene.

The SCVMIC is working with private entrepreneurs on the analysis of zeolite enriched with mineral elements and various fractures of perlite. These may serve as production media.

Close contacts have been established with various public institutions. Variety testing and the propagation of promising hybrids of tomato, pepper and floricultural plants is being carried out with the Zakritiy grunt association. Joint activities are being implemented with Zelyonaya tropinka on the establishment of organic vegetable production. Activities are also being conducted with the Shen organization on the analysis of varieties and their selection for different climatic areas of Armenia, as well as on their introduction into organic vegetable production.

Good contacts have been established with the farmers of the republic who are testing new varieties and hybrids selected in SCVMIC. The Centres scientists also provide regular advice on varieties and their cultivation to farmers, stakeholders and institutions. In addition to governmental and private organizations, the Centre is also collaborating with similar institutions in CIS countries. Sound business contacts have been established with the All Russian Research Institute for Breeding and Seed Production of Vegetable Crops and the Ukrainian State Variety Trial Commission for Agricultural Crops.

Collaboration with AVRDC The World Vegetable Center Since 2005, SCVMIC has cooperated with AVRDC The World Vegetable Center. Scientists from Armenia participated in the international meeting conducted by AVRDC in Tashkent. The Centre is carrying out analysis of 100 lines and varieties, introduced from AVRDC, including 20 accessions each of tomato, pepper, eggplant, soybean and golden gram. The best accessions will be submitted for the state variety testing to be introduced in Armenia, and will be included in the selection process for new varieties. Young specialists have had the opportunity to study at international training courses in AVRDC (Taiwan) and in Uzbekistan. In the short-term, the Centre would like to collaborate with AVRDC on the following topics: 1) Coordinated regional experiments on promising crops; 2) Collection, exchange, description, conservation and use of indigenous genetic resources; 3) Seed breeding systems for self-pollinating varieties and hybrids of selected vegetable crops; 4) Training of young scientists on the above topics.

National strategies and plans for the development of vegetable production The document Policy on food security for the Republic of Armenia was approved at the session of the Government held on 25 January 2005. This policy is in line with the Strategic Program on Overcoming Poverty in which overcoming food insecurity is seen as a key first step in the elimination of poverty. Analysis of the key challenges, identification of their solutions and the most important component of the activitydevelopment of the document itselfwere followed by establishment of The Strategy for Sustainable Agricultural Development in the Republic of Armenia. This document covers all aspects of agrarian policy. For the period 20062007, the government specifies the priorities for the agricultural sector, provides guidelines for key efforts and collaborations between the state and local authorities, donors and economic entities. The key tasks of the strategy are as follows: introduction of advanced agrotechnical systems in the plant industry, efficient management of seed breeding and selection, and action taken on arrangements for plant protection and quarantine.

10 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Azerbaijan - Dr. Fuad Mamedov Introduction Azerbaijan has favorable climatic and soil conditions for commercial vegetable production.

Azerbaijans vegetable producers aim to increase their output of early- and late-autumn vegetable crops to meet the countrys rising domestic demand for fresh produce, and to supply canneries with vegetables for processing. The countrys 8.1 million people consume about 165 kg of vegetables per capita each year. Domestic demand for vegetables is about 1.2-1.5 million tonnes, and for melons, about 180-230,000 tonnes.

The vegetable production export sector is also growing. Russia is the main market for Azerbaijans exports.

National policy in the vegetable production sector Beginning in 1993, serious steps were taken to reform Azerbaijans agricultural sector. Land reforms instituted in 1996 prompted an entrepreneurs movement. Further laws on agrarian land reform, including collective and Soviet farms, were adopted in 2005.

The private ownership of land has caused a radical change in the attitudes of Azerbaijanis toward land. Farmers who are the absolute owners of land now have an incentive to cultivate efficiently and tend their property with care. By 1998, up to 80% of the countrys agricultural output was produced in the private sector; by the end 2005, this figure rose to 98%.

Currently, more than 3 million rural dwellers own more than 1.2 million ha of land. As a result of agrarian reform, an increasing number of farmers want to raise an assortment of vegetables to meet demand.

In Azerbaijan, commercial vegetable production is concentrated in the Lenkoran-Astarin, KubaKhachmas, Apsheron and Gyandja-Kazakh areas. The exceptionally warm and mild climate of Lenkoran-Astarin favors early vegetable cultivation. Vegetable production in Kuba-Khachmas focuses on supplying raw stock to the canning industry; its location near the urban industrial centers of Baku and Sumgait also offers a ready market for fresh vegetables for city dwellers. In Apsheron, vegetable production also serves the populations of Baku and Sumgait, and vegetables grown in Gyandja-Kazakh supply Gyandji town and other neighboring cities.

Cultivated areas under vegetable and melon crops are expanding as Azerbaijans population increases.

In 2005, the cultivated vegetable area was 78,600 ha; under melons, 30,000 ha. Compared to 1997, the vegetable area expanded by 51,400 ha, and the area under melons increased by 21,600 ha. In the vegetable gross output achieved 1,103,500 tonnes; for melon crops, 363,100 tonnes (Table 1).

Table 1 Cultivated area and gross output of vegetable and melons in Azerbaijan Source: The State Statistic Committee Imported hybrids, greenhouses, and other technologies from Israel, Holland and other European countries accelerated development of Azerbaijans vegetable production sector, especially for sheltered production. Vegetables are now grown year-round and meet not only local demand, but also are exported to neighboring countries and overseas. To compare, in 2005, 34,000 tonnes of vegetables were exported; in 1993, exports amounted to less than 10,000 tonnes.

Raising vegetables under shelter is more profitable compared to open ground cultivation. Sheltered production is expanding in area every year; currently, Azerbaijan has more than 6,000 greenhouse Factors constraining vegetable production The main factors negatively influencing the level of production and development of vegetable growing are:

Lack of water in some areas, and the overall poor condition of irrigation infrastructure A disabled seed production system, with no specialization Lack of tractors, agricultural machines and equipment 12 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Absence of planting complexes for special purposes Shortage of mineral fertilizers and plant protection means High prices for inputs and no assurance of input quality Farmers unaware of new technologies Low level of methodical agronomical assistance to farmers and producers Sharp shortage of agronomical personnel; low salaries contribute to the decreasing prestige of the profession State registration of vegetable crop varieties As of 1996, Azerbaijan has registered 98 varieties of vegetable and melon crops. Thirty two were selected by scientists from Azerbaijan Research Institute of Vegetable Growing for development, including: white cabbage (6 varieties); tomato for unprotected ground (6); tomato for sheltered production (3); pepper (4); two varieties of garlic, carrot, eggplant, and bean each; and one variety of cucumber, onion, pea, dill and watermelon. The registry also includes 7 local and 56 introduced varieties, mostly from CIS countries.

Varieties are evaluated and added to the registry by the State Variety Trial Commission, a state-funded institution. Varieties are tested under different climatic conditions at various locations around the country. The testing sites operated by the commission have very poor source material and technical infrastructure, and are in need of serious financial support.

Vegetable seed production About 2,000 tonnes of seeds are required to plant an area of 110,000 ha to vegetable crops and melons. According to 2005 data, 640 tonnes of seeds were produced in Azerbaijan, so the country must import a significant quantity of seed to meet demand.

Seed production faces a number of serious problems. Various companies sell vegetable seed in Azerbaijan that was selected under the climatic and soil conditions of other countries. When local farmers and vegetable growers plant these seeds, they often find these varieties are not adapted to the soil and climatic conditions of Azerbaijan, and lack strong tolerance to diseases and pests. The farmers produce a low yield, which affects family incomes. Azerbaijans law on seed production must be observed to provide farmers with quality vegetable and melon seeds. There is a strong need to establish a scientifically sound seed production system. The Azerbaijan Research Institute of Vegetable Growing, the countrys principal seed producer, needs support, and the private seed marketing structure needs to be more fully developed.

Resources The Azerbaijan Research Institute of Vegetable Growing (AzRIVG) has the following priorities:

development of scientific vegetable, melon and potato production creation of new high-yielding varieties new approaches in seed production development advanced cultivation technologies that take into consideration the soil and climate The Ministry for Agriculture oversees AzRIVG's operation. Currently, the institute has 224 employees, including 66 scientists. AzRIVG is funded through the state budget; its technical infrastructure is poor and needs serious financial support. Few young specialists are drawn to work at the institute due to insufficient funding.

National program and research Starting in 2006, the Azerbaijan Research Institute of Vegetable Growing launched program activities in three areas of research: high-yielding varieties and hybrids tolerant to diseases, pests and abiotic environmental factors; collection and analysis of the gene pool; and development of technologies for vegetables, melons, and potato production, cultivation, and processing. These activities include surveys on the scientific basis for vegetable and melon production; the creation of new high-yielding varieties; and new approaches to seed production and advanced cultivation methods adapted to the soil and climate of different areas of the country. Forty-seven scientists are conducting the research on three Institute farms: Lenkoran regional experimental station (65 ha), Kusarchay regional experimental station (150 ha), and Apsheron production and experimental farm (80 ha).

Recently, the government of Azerbaijan, the World Bank and international scientific centers jointly proclaimed a tender for the Competitive Grant Program. Governmental and nongovernmental organizations were represented in the tender. The World Bank has invested in three vegetable production projects. The Azerbaijan Research Institute of Vegetable Growing is currently implementing a project on Advanced technology of vegetable output expansion. In 20032004 project activities were successfully implemented on 50 farms in Lenkoran-Astarin, Kuba-Khachmass, and GyandjaKazakh, with funding of USD 50,000. Higher yields were obtained with the introduction of advanced technologies, farmers improved their crop management skills, and farm incomes increased. We believe this project has value and would benefit from more national funding.

Partnerships The Azerbaijan Research Institute of Vegetable Growing has established contacts with other government insititutes, nongovernmental organizations, and businesses to develop the horticulture sector in the country. Currently, the Institute is collaborating with the Research Institute of Genetic Resources, Research Institute of Radiobiology, Research Institute of Agrochemistry and Soil Science, Research Institute of Zoology under the National Academy of Science of Azerbaijan, Baku State University, EMA, Tovuz-Baltiya Ltd., Agrobusiness Consulting, farmers and private entrepreneurs.

Collaboration with AVRDC The World Vegetable Center Since 2005, the Azerbaijan Research Institute Vegetable Growing has cooperated closely with AVRDC The World Vegetable Center. Four representatives from Azerbaijans agricultural research institutes participated in an international meeting on vegetable production conducted by AVRDC.

Three Azerbaijani specialists received trainingtwo at AVRDC headquarters in Taiwan, and one in 14 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Uzbekistan. The Institute is involved in regional vegetable crop variety trials. Tomato, pepper and soybean accessions received from AVRDC were tested at the Apsheron production and experimental farm and the Lenkoran experimental station, and promising varieties were identified. At the beginning of August 2006 three employees attended a meeting in Tashkent to review the regional variety tests.

National strategies and plans for the development of vegetable production Azerbaijans national Program for Food Security aims to increase agricultural output, moderate prices, eliminate food shortages, and improve the social status and financial standing of rural communities.

The program strives to rehabilitate and develop the agricultural infrastructure of Azerbaijan, and places special emphasis on seed production and postharvest processing. With support from donor organizations, Azerbaijan would like to continue its collaboration with AVRDC to expand and enhance vegetable production.

1 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Georgia - Dr. Natalya Kakabadze Introduction Georgia is a mountainous country located near the Black Sea. The countrys complex combinations of latitude and altitude offer a diversity of climatic conditions for agriculture. Vegetable crops are cultivated in valleys, in the foothills, and in mountainous regions at an altitude of 2,200 m. The countrys 4.6 million people consume about 82 kg of vegetables per capita each year.

National policy in the vegetable production sector Vegetable production is a key sector of Georgian agriculture. In 2005, the State Statistics Department reported 40,000 ha were planted with vegetable crops and 20,000 ha with melons. The gross output was equal to 430,000 tonnes, the mean yield was 11 t/ha. From overall vegetable output, 4, tonnes were used for seed production, 25,000 tonnes for livestock feed, 360,000 tonnes for human consumption, and 8,000 tonnes were exported.

The vegetable production sector employs an estimated 430,400 people. In the 1980s, commercial vegetable production supplied 90-95% of Georgias vegetables, but now commercial operations account for barely 10% of the countrys vegetable supply. Currently, small and economically weak farms raise most of the countrys vegetables. Approximately 10-20% of the overall income of small farmers comes from vegetables.

Factors constraining vegetable production The development of the vegetable production sector is constrained by the inability to produce quality vegetable seeds in sufficient amounts. a lack of quality seed for regional variety testing, and a lack of postharvest storage and processing facilities.

State registration of vegetable crop varieties Vegetable crops in Georgia are registered with the state variety inspection unit, which issues a regionalized variety catalog. This catalog provides a description of characteristics and traits of each variety and specifies the favorable regions for their cultivation. Over the last 10 years, the following varieties were regionalized in Georgia: tomato (Choportula, Aragvi); onion (Belyi Lizi); cabbage (Likani); and varieties of table beet, carrot and other crops.

Vegetable seed production In the 1990s, the Research Institute of Crop Husbandry and its stations cultivated seed stock and pedigree seeds, and the Gruzovoshsortsem association produced seed on its farms for the entire country. In the late 1990s this association was liquidated; its lands were privatized and transferred to smallholders. Currently, the Institute and its experimental stations are handling primary seed production. Farmers purchase these seeds, and also use the seeds they have produced by themselves to plant their fields.

National program and research Over 70 vegetable varieties are cultivated at Georgias Research Institute of Crop Husbandry and its three experimental stations, Gori (71 ha), Gardabani (310 ha) and Tshaltubo (40 ha).

The Institute developed programs on primary seed production, germplasm conservation, and cultivation technologies for tomato, cabbage and onion. These two-year programs were submitted for state funding. Individual farmers, farmers associations and processing enterprises will be involved in the programs.

A gene bank was established at the Institute in 2003 with support from the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA). It aims to conserve Georgias crop diversity.

Its holdings include 15% vegetable and melon seed; 10% cereals; 25% legumes; 20% maize; 25% tobacco; 5% medicinal plants.

Local and introduced varieties are used as initial stock in new variety selections. Thirty five varieties from this stock were selected and released. Except for selection, the method of intervarietal hybridization is also applied, but at this writing these activities have not been properly developed.

Activities to develop better methods for all areas of vegetable crop cultivation are ongoing. One technique is microcrop rotation for torfy or kitchen gardens. It comprises two micro fields. One field is sown with vegetables, and the second one with a mixture of alfalfa and ryegrass. Micro fields are rotated over a period of at least two years. With microcrop rotation, erosion is minimized and and vegetables can be produced in an ecologically safe manner.

Skilled professionals are required to conduct research. Unfortunately, due to low salaries and the hard manual labor required, few people are interested in pursuing careers in agricultural research.

Existing agricultural machinery (sowing and planting machines, cutters, cultivators and harvesters) is old and impractical; the Institute needs to re-equip its facilities with modern machinery. The rehabilitation of irrigation channels and pumping stations has begun, but hardware for irrigation systems is not available. There are few postharvest processing enterprises. Georgia lacks funds for all these agricultural reforms.

Partnerships The Research Institute of Crop Husbandry is collaborating with the private sector, farmers and various companies. Its relationship with AVRDC The World Vegetable Center began in 2005, when scientists from Georgia participated in an international meeting initiated by AVRDC. We hope to continue these fruitful contacts. AVRDC has the knowledge to support our plant breeders and seed producers.

18 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting National strategies and plans for the development of vegetable production To promote vegetable production in Georgia, the following actions should be taken:

establish and disseminate high-yield varieties and hybrids; use only regionalized varieties rehabilitate the seed production system conserve Georgias biodiversity, including vegetable and melon crops, by collecting, analyzing and conserving germplasm in the genebank.

expand the range of vegetables for cultivation and consumption increase the fertility of the land promote the health and nutrition benefits of vegetable consumption through the media collaborate with foreign scientific institutions and vegetable crop centers 20 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Kazakhstan - Dr. Temirjan Aytbayev Introduction The territory of the Republic of Kazakhstan is 2.72 million km2. Its population is 15.07 million people and 528,000 live in Astana, the capital. Annual vegetable consumption is 120 kg and melon consumption is 26 kg per capita.

Vegetable output is 1.8 million tonnes and melon output is 400,000 tonnes. However, in spite of the general availability of vegetables, shortages and a poor available assortment often occur during winter and spring. This is related to a lack of modern vegetable storage facilities and commodity sales points. During the summer and autumn vegetables are overproduced, but there is a lack of processing enterprises in the country. This fluctuating supply situation causes price reductions, and reduces the profitability of vegetable production.

National policy in the vegetable production sector Current vegetable production policies are covered in three recent government programs. The action plans to be implemented through two programs The State Program for Rural Development in the Republic of Kazakhstan for 2004-2010 and Concept of Agribusiness Development to 2010 were announced in Decree #1149 by the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan on 10 July 2003. The Government Decree of the Republic of Kazahkstan #157 of 14 March 2006 also approved The Rules of Payment Arrangements to Support the Yield and Quality of Agricultural Crop Production. Up to 90% of the entire vegetable and melon output in Kazakhstan is produced by the private sector (production cooperatives, dekhkan [private] farms, farm households), and only 10% by the state sector.

Vegetables are grown in 14 provinces of Kazakhstan on an area of 110,000 ha while melon crops occupy an area of 45,000 ha. The mean vegetable yield is 15.3 t/ha, and the mean melon crop yield is 11.8 t/ha. Two thirds of the countrys vegetable production and 87% of its melon crops are produced in the south and south-east of Kazakhstan in Almaty, South-Kazakhstan and Kzylorda provinces. A total of 3900 ha of vegetables are grown in Northern Kazakhstan, 3400 ha in Central Kazakhstan.

In Eastern Kazakhstan vegetable crops occupy 10,300 ha, and melon crops, 1700 ha; in Western Kazakhstan there are 3000 ha of vegetables and 1300 ha of melons.

The national policy for the vegetable production sector aims to expand vegetable and melon cultivation in the northern regions of the Republic, diversify vegetable production and reduce the seasonality of supply, develop the processing industry, consolidate and preserve farm ownership patterns and increase of the profitability of vegetable production.

The vegetable production sector in Kazakhstan is developing thanks to governmental support.

The state provides farming enterprises with mineral fertilizers, pesticides, and diesel oil at a 40% discount; irrigation water is subsidized to the degree of 50% and credit to purchase agricultural machinery, seeds and other stock is available. Government laboratories also provide free services for seed germination testing and quality determinations.

Factors constraining vegetable production Despite governmental support, there are a number of factors constraining the development of vegetable production:

Subdivision of the former large specialized vegetable production farms into small dekhkan farms (510 ha) is limited by the number of experienced vegetable growers, the technical infrastructure and establishment of effective vegetable crop rotations.

Lack of indigenous varieties of important vegetable crops such as white cabbage, pepper, eggplant, carrot, beet, squash, lettuce, parsley, spinach and legumes that are adapted to cultivation under local soil and climatic conditions.

An insufficient number of processing plants. Many perishable vegetables such as tomato, pepper, eggplant, cucumber, greens and legumes are spoiled or sold at a low price. This reduces farmers incomes and incentive to be involved in vegetable production.

Lack of vegetable sale outlets and long-term storage points. This is important for cabbage, onion, carrot, beet and radish, and can make sales more secure and reliable.

The vegetable crop seed production system was destroyed during the transition period, and has not yet been reorganized.

Agricultural production mainly relies on manual labor.

There has been a low introduction of scientific achievements in the vegetable production State registration of vegetable crop varieties Currently, 272 varieties and hybrids of vegetable and melon crops have been released for cultivation in Kazakhstan, and these are shown in Table 1. Thirty six locally selected varieties of vegetable and melon crops were recommended for regional use in Kazakhstan, including onion, 7 varieties; shallot, 2 varieties; garlic, 2 varieties; tomato for field cultivation, 5, and tomato for sheltered cultivation varieties; cucumber, 4 varieties; pumpkin, 3 varieties; watermelon, 5 varieties; melon, 5 varieties, and 1 radish variety.

One hundred and sixty one varieties and hybrids of vegetable and melon crops selected in CIS countries were recommended for regional use, as well as 57 varieties and hybrids of crops from foreign companies. The varieties and hybrids from the following Dutch companies have the highest rate of uptake: Beyo Zaden, Syngenta Seeds BV, Reyk Zvaan, Enza Zaden and Nunhems Netherlands. More and more varieties and hybrids are being transferred to the State Commission for Agricultural Crop Variety Testing in the Republic. These varieties and hybrids are tested for three years before the best are recommended for regional use.

22 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Table 1 Varieties and hybrids of vegetable and melon crops released for cultivation in Kazakhstan

VARIETIES VARIETIES VARIETIES

CROP CROP CROP

RELEASED RELEASED RELEASED

Pekinese cabbage Source: The State Variety Register Vegetable seed production Sixty kilos of super elite seeds, 760 kg of elite seeds, 22 tons of first reproduction seeds and tons of second reproduction seeds are required to supply the entire area under vegetable and melon production in the Republic.

The Kazakh Research Institute for Potato and Vegetable Farming (KazRIPVF) and 5 seed farms are producing nuclear seed stock for vegetable and melon crops in the Republic. The farms include Opytnoe, Fyodor and Nam, located in Almaty province in the southeast, as well Terra in northern Kostanay province and Yunchi in Jambyl province in the south of the Republic, but this supply is apparently not sufficient.

KazRIPVF produces 1,2001,500 kg of vegetable and melon crop seeds each year, including seeds of onion, tomato, cucumber, carrot, beet, dill, radish, lettuce, pumpkin, squash, watermelon and melon.

The Institute has the potential to completely meet the Republics vegetable and melon seed needs if necessary, but currently only 2025% of demand in Kazakhstan is being met internally, and up to 7075% of seeds are imported from neighboring countries and overseas at a high price. Very often these seeds are of poor quality or of varieties that have not been locally approved for release and are poorly adapted to cultivation under Kazakhstan conditions.

The following activities have to be implemented for the rehabilitation of the vegetable and melon seed production sector in Kazakhstan:

1. Develop a target-oriented program for the rehabilitation of the seed production sector and development of vegetable and melon crops in Kazakhstan.

2. Identify the seed producing farms for vegetable and melon crops and specify the assortment for each individual producer considering the adaptation of the varieties to the particular soil and climatic conditions of the areas.

3. Assign scientific institutions to produce the nuclear seed stock and pedigree seeds, according to the regional adaptation of the vegetable crops.

4. Establish seed producers associations with the service that will be dealing with integrated seed adaptation and sale.

5. Specify the amount of state subsidies for primary and nuclear seed stock production;

not less than 100200% of commercial seed cost.

6. Establish guaranteed state order and quota for the original and nuclear seed stock, as well as for the first reproduction seeds.

7. Facilitate dekhkan farms willing to produce vegetable and melon seed to acquire the necessary machinery and special facilities through soft lending and leasing.

Resources KazRIPVF is acting as the Republics scientific center for potato, vegetable and melon production and for coordinating the operation of 10 scientific institutions in these sectors.

Surveys on selection, cultivation techniques and storage of vegetable and melon crops are conducted only at KazRIPVF. Research on the gene pool of vegetable crops is being conducted in KazRIPVF (over 80%), in the Shalkar experimental station (over 16%), Kazakh National Agrarian University (over 2%), and on the melon gene pool in the Aral Research Institute of Agroecology and Agriculture.

KazRIPVF is subordinate to the Scientific and Production Centre for Farming and Plant Industry (SPC) under the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Kazakhstan, and the Shalkar experimental station and Aral Research Institute of Agroecology and Agriculture are subordinate to the SouthWestern Scientific and Production Centre of Agriculture (SPC) under the Ministry for Agriculture of the Republic of Kazakhstan. The Kazakh National Agrarian University (KazNAU) is operating under the supervision of the Ministry for Education and Science of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

KazRIPVF has a staff of 138 people, including 55 scientists, 5 Doctors of Science and 20 Candidates of Science. In Kazakhstan 10 specialists are implementing research activities on the gene pool of vegetable and melon crops; 21 specialists on selection; 18 specialists are dealing with research on cultivation techniques and 5 specialists on vegetable storage. The state budget is funding these research activities.

The material and technical infrastructure of the research institutes has to be updated and reinforced.

Since 2003, the Ministry for Agriculture of the Republic of Kazakhstan has been providing its subordinate institutions with scientific instruments and equipment as well as with agricultural machinery.

24 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting National program and research In 20012005 vegetable production research was conducted on 10 subjects within the framework of the republican budgetary item Applied Research in the Agricultural Field, and under two subprograms: in the republican target-oriented program Conservation, Development and Utilization of the Gene Pools of Agricultural Plants, Animals and Microorganisms for 20012005 and in the sectoral scientific and technical program Scientific Support of Agricultural Products Manufacturing, Processing and Storage in the Regions of Kazakhstan for 20012005. Research in the vegetable production field in the Republic of Kazakhstan is being implemented within the framework of the republican budgetary program Applied Research in the Agroindustrial Sector for 20062008 on 12 subjects, nine of them being undertaken at KazRIPVF.

National programs are funded by the state budget: The national program for research development for 20062010 comprises surveys on the gene pool, selection, seed production and cultivation techniques for vegetable and melon crops. The share of vegetable production research as compared to other agricultural sectors, which include farming, plant production, and livestock production, is equal to 2.5%.

The total funding of all programs being implemented by KazRIPVF is equal to KZT 43.02 million, which includes KTZ 25.9 million for the vegetable production sector, KZT 1.5 million for KazNAU (gene pool) and for PRIAEA, KZT 2 million. The following twelve scientific projects are in operation during the period of 20062008:

1. Genetic resources of vegetable and melon crops: collection, assessment, storage arrangements and information database establishment.

2. Selection of onion, shallot, perennial onion and garlic varieties for disease-resistance under storage, high productive capacity and other valuable traits as found in both indigenous and introduced forms.

3. Selection of early ripening varieties of tomato with high yield, wide adaptation and disease resistance.

4. Selection of new cucumber and pumpkin varieties resistant to peronosporasis and stressful environmental factors.

5. Selection of high producing varieties of watermelon and melon with good disease tolerance, high sugar content, high fruit keeping capacity and transportability.

6. Development of initial stock for table carrot selection and improvement of primary seed breeding techniques.

7. Collection of sweet pepper of various originations and evaluation of traits.

8. Selection of heterotic tomato hybrids for sheltered production.

9. Development of resource-saving technologies for vegetable crop cultivation based on soil microorganisms, their diversification and reproduction.

10. Gene pool formation and assessment, and the establishment of new melon varieties for cultivation under the extreme conditions of the Aral Sea basin, which will be competitive under market conditions (PRIAEA).

11. Conservation, updating and surveying of the gene pool of fodder, vegetable and cereal crops for identification of sources of tolerance to salinity, heat drought and cold which will be applied in selection activities in the southwest (Shalkar experimental 12. Expansion of the rare vegetable species gene pool assessment of its traits (KazNAU) Partnerships The Institutes scientists closely cooperate with a range of vegetable producers including dekhkan farms and farm households. New varieties and the technological achievements of KazRIPVF are being introduced into more than 100 farms all over the Republic.

The leading scientists of the Institute provide consulting, scientific, methodological and practical assistance on all plant production issues. Guidelines for vegetable crop cultivation and other reference literature on plant protection against pests and diseases, as well as fertilizer application are being developed and published to support the smallholder farmers. Agricultural training sessions for smallholder farmers are conducted every year, and numerous scientific achievement exhibitions and TV and radio programs are being arranged.

Collaboration with AVRDC The World Vegetable Center KazRIVPF has been cooperating with VRDC The World Vegetable Center since 2003. Its scientists actively participated in conducting the International Workshop on Vegetable Production Status and Perspectives in Central Asia. Four specialists from the Scientific and Production Centre for Farming and Plant Industry, the Ministry for Agriculture, and KazRIVPF attended the vegetable production meeting held in Tashkent in 2005. Three specialists from KazRIPVF participated in the training courses on vegetable production in AVRDC (Taiwan) and in Uzbekistan in 2005 and 2006.

In 2006 KazRIVPF participated in the management of regional trials of the vegetable crop varieties supplied by AVRDC. Two hundred and ninety seven vegetable crop accessions were received from AVRDC to enrich the Institutes gene pool. It is necessary to continue the study of new germplasm from AVRDC.

National strategies and plans for the development of vegetable production The national strategy of the Republic of Kazakhstan is focused on the following objectives:

year-round provision to the population of high quality, ecologically safe, fresh and processed vegetable products at a reasonable price with elimination of seasonality and consolidation of small farms while preserving the ownership patterns, and complete re-equipment of producers with advanced machinery and technology;

2 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting sustainable development of profitable vegetable production;

maximized automation of vegetable production operations and the introduction of new advanced technologies into the vegetable production sector;

expansion of vegetable and melon crop cultivation areas and gross production;

development of the canning and drying industries through the development of regional processing industries;

increase of vegetable output under shelter;

creation of highly productive, environmental stress-resistant and disease-tolerant varieties of vegetable and melon crops and expansion of their genetic make up;

establishment of a national system for vegetable and melon crop seed production based on the network of seed farms for production of the nuclear seed stocks; providing vegetable production farms with cheap and high grade seeds of local varieties;

scientific support to the vegetable production sector and intensification of scientific communications;

development of international cooperation in the field of vegetable production.

28 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Kyrgyzstan - Acad. Jamin Akimaliev Introduction Agriculture drives the Kyrgyz economy, providing 46% of the countrys annual gross domestic product (GDP). Kyrgyzstans 5 million people consume 65 kg of vegetables per capita each year.

Sixty-five per cent of the population lives in rural areas. Mountains cover 94% of Kyrgyzstan.

National policy in the vegetable production sector The Kyrgyz government approved the Concept of agrarian policy of the Kyrgyz Republic till 2010 to guide the activities of dekhkan (private) farms and agricultural cooperatives. The following vegetable crops are cultivated in Kyrgyzstan: tomato and pepper, cucumber, cabbage, onion, carrot and table beet (Table 1). About 37,700 ha are planted with these crops. Gross production is 576, tonnes. Tomato occupies the leading place among the vegetable crops in terms of cultivated area, output volume, and procurement; its cultivated area amounts to 30% of the entire space occupied by vegetable crops. The Chuy Valley is the key area for tomato cultivation. The mean tomato yield in 2005 was 18.3 t/ha. Over 50% of the tomato harvest is processed; the remainder is consumed fresh.

Carrot is second in importance after tomato, occupying 22.1% of the cultivated area; onion is third, with 18.2%. Vegetables also are grown under sheltered production in a few areas.

State registration of vegetable crop varieties According to current legislation, farmers should cultivate vegetable crop varieties that have been tested by the State Variety Trial Commission and included in the state registry. However, there have been situations when out-of-region varieties were cultivated with permission from the Ministry of Agriculture.

Twenty-one varieties of cucumbers from the Commonwealth of Independent States and overseas, as well as 22 cabbage varieties were selected by the Research Institute of Crop Husbandry for release in Kyrgyzstan. One of the selected varietiesKyrgyzskayais a white cabbage cultivated in all areas of Kyrgyzstan. It is a mid-ripening cultivar with a compact head, a flat-round shape, and a weight of 3.3-3.7 kg, and is consumed fresh or in processed forms. This varietys yield is equal to 79.5 t/ha and commercial output is 96-99%. Kyrgyzskaya transports well and has a long shelf life, good for long-term storage in winter.

Six varieties of table beet, five varieties of radish, one variety of winter radish, seven varieties of sweet pepper and two eggplant varieties are recommended for cultivation in Kyrgyzstan.

Currently, 23 tomato varieties are on the registry, but only one of themBishkekis a cultivar of Kyrgyz selection. The rest are varieties and hybrids selected in foreign countries, which may not meet Kyrgyzstans requirements.

Bishkek was selected by the Kyrgyz Research Institute of Crop Husbandry. It is a high-yielding tomato with a potential yield of 71.3 t/ha. This variety is mid-ripening (110115 days) with a fruit weight of up to 102 g. Commercial output is 95%, and tomato juice output, 92%. At the Research Institute of Crop Husbandrys experimental farm, Bishkek yielded 58 ton/ha; at the Rassvet cooperative farm in the Sokuluk region, the yield was 56.7 t/ha. Bishkek has been regionalized for all soil and climatic areas of Kyrgyzstan.

Vegetable seed production The vegetable growers of the republic raise about 75% of their seed locally. Kyrgyzstan also imports seeds from varieties selected in Russia, Holland, China and Uzbekistan.

Seed of higher quality cereal crops command premium prices in Kyrgyzstan. However, the same premium does not apply to pedigree vegetable seeds, which dampens the attractiveness of primary seed production activities for entrepreneurs. It is much easier to import initial stock and propagate it.

Selection is not carried out and spatial isolation is not observed during seed production; this leads to the production of poor quality seed.

National program and research Research activities are carried out by the Research Institute of Crop Husbandry of Kyrgyzstan and its experimental stations. Apart from variety selection and seed production, the Institute develops vegetable crop cultivation technology in the highlands of Naryn province. White cabbage and carrot varieties have been developed for seed production.

Scientific research is essential for the continuing development of vegetable production in Kyrgyzstan.

Limited funds, low salaries, fewer scientists, out-of-date material and a poor technical infrastructure prevent research activities from being conducted at an appropriate level.

Partnerships AVRDC The World Vegetable Center can assist Kyrgyzstans vegetable production sector by:

Training young scientists at AVRDC headquarters and regional offices Providing promising accessions of AVRDC vegetable crops Establishing joint projects in priority vegetable production Conducting workshops and training courses on advanced vegetable crop cultivation National strategies and plans for the development of vegetable production Kyrgyzstan intends to expand vegetable cultivation and improve yield to meet the growing demand for fresh vegetables and to supply produce for the vegetable processing industry. Vegetable production is best conducted by private enterprise, either on large commercial farms or by smallholder farmers.

To encourage entrepreneurs to enter the vegetable sector, Kyrgyzstan must develop higher-yielding, transportable local varieties of different vegetable crops with good flavor, color and other qualities.

0 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Kyrgyzstan hopes to improve the quality of vegetable seed by producing carrot and cabbage seeds in the Kyrgyz highlands, and tomato seed in the valleys.

Table 1 Cultivated area, yield and gross output of vegetable crops in Kyrgyzstan in Source: National Statistic Committee, Kyrgyzstan 2 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Tajikistan - Dr. Domulo Boboev Introduction Large Soviet farms were reorganized in the Republic of Tajikistan after its proclamation of independence, and over 240 associations, 35 agricultural cooperatives and around 22.3 thousand dekhkan (private) farms were established. These farms are the main producers of vegetables and melons.

Vegetable production of Tajikistan has an ancient history and the country is part of the Central Asian centre of origin for many vegetable species. Onion, carrot, garlic, turnip, radish, green and odoriferous vegetables, melon, and pumpkin have been cultivated in the territory of the republic for many centuries. Wild species of onion, carrot and melon (Cucumis melo Z., ssp Spontaneum Fil.) grow in the mountains and valleys of the republic. A number of excellent varieties of onion, carrot and melon crops were selected during this lengthy history of vegetable production and are currently cultivated in the republic. Such introduced crops as tomato, white cabbage, and cauliflower, cucumber, hot and sweet pepper, eggplant, table beet and watermelon are also cultivated here.

National policy in the vegetable production sector Before the collapse of the USSR a network of specialized vegetable production farms was operating in Tajikistan. These farms provided the population with fresh vegetables, and commodities for vegetable processing enterprises. A considerable amount of the output was also exported beyond the republic. Every year 70-80,000 tonnes of vegetables and 40-45,000 tonnes of melons were supplied to the All-Union fund.

The national policy aims to develop the vegetable production sector. In 2005 the cultivated area under vegetables was more than 33,400 ha and the vegetable gross output was equal to 718,500 tonnes annually (Table 1). Most vegetables are grown on small farms and in backyards (Table 2).

Factors constraining vegetable production Agriculture faces a number of structural and financial limitations. There is a lack of tractors and agricultural machinery and the vegetable varieties available do not meet modern requirements.

Vegetable production development is also limited due to a lack of funds for investment and processing plant construction. The scientific institutions of the republic supporting agriculture also require improved material, technical infrastructure, and personnel training.

State registry of vegetable crop varieties Currently, over 50 varieties of vegetable and melon crops have been listed in the state registry and are being used in its regions. Tajikistan scientists have selected a number of new high yielding and high quality varieties of vegetable crops adapted to local conditions. They include 132 varieties of the following crops: Cucumber: Gissar variety, Tajik early 118 and Benazir; onion: middle-late Dusti, Leninabad kulcha, ultra early-ripening winter, Peshpazak, late-ripening summer, Vahdat; cabbage:

Dushanbe late; carrot: Mshaki surkh; garlic, Dushanbe 2; tomato, Fayzabad red; melon, Bukhori 33;

watermelon, Vakhsh dark-skin, Khait-kara and Kozibay; and pumpkin, Leninabal perehvatka and others. In addition, as a result of scientific analysis many foreign varieties of vegetable and melon crops also have been selected for local use and now contribute to commercial vegetable production in Tajikistan.

Table 1 Cultivated area, yield and gross output of vegetable crops in Tajikistan* Table 2 Vegetable production in the farms with different patterns of ownership in Tajikistan* * Source: State Statistics Committee Vegetable seed production Specialized farms for the production of vegetable and melon seed operate in the republic. However, the seed production system doesnt meet requirements. Only about 60-65% of current seed demand is met internally and the rest is imported. Such imported seed does not assure high yields and there is also a risk of expanded disease and pest problems.

4 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting The Sogdian branch named after I.V. Michurin and the Sunbula experimental farm in the Gissar region under the Scientific Production Association (SPA) Bogparvar are specialized for the production of super-elite and elite seeds of vegetable and melon crops.

Resources Currently, research in vegetable production is conducted by Bogparvar and its experimental stations.

Both scientists and specialists are involved in this activity. Every year 12 people enter Ph.D. studies in the area of vegetable production.

Research work is limited by a lack of equipment and laboratory stock. The available laboratory equipment is outdated and cannot meet current requirements. The acquisition of advanced equipment and laboratory stock is extremely important.

National program and research The objective of the national program for vegetable production research and development is to provide a secure supply of vegetables and melons to meet the populations needs.

Research efficiency and good results depend primarily on adequate funding. The current insufficient funding has a negative impact on the quality of research activities.

Vegetable producing organizations are also poorly funded by the state, and projects and funding through international centers and organizations are not available.

Partnerships Scientists of the republic have close links both with state and public institutions and with farms and private producers.

In April 2005 four representatives from the Academy of Agricultural Science and Research Institutes of Tajikistan attended the international workshop on: Improved Income and Nutrition in Central Asia and the Caucasus through Enhanced Market- and Trade-oriented Vegetable Systems Research and Development which was held in 2005 in Tashkent (Uzbekistan) and arranged by AVRDC the World Vegetable Centre. Two specialists participated in training courses on testing vegetable crop varieties in 2006. To create new varieties the introduction of new vegetable crop accessions from AVRDC is required.

National strategies and plans for the development of vegetable production The national strategy is oriented towards achieving sustainable development of the vegetable production and melon-growing sector. It stipulates the development of strategic vegetable production policies and their implementation, as well as the development of mechanisms for efficient production, processing, packaging, storing and marketing of vegetables and melons.

 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Turkmenistan - Dr. Geldi Goshayev Introduction The key objective of Turkmenistan agriculture is to effectively meet the populations demand for food. vegetable production is the most important sector of the countrys agriculture. The lengthy warm season in Turkmenistan allows cultivation of vegetables in the open and under shelter almost all year round.

National policy in the vegetable production sector The main vegetables produced in Turkmenistan are tomato, cucumber, cabbage, onion, carrot and beet (Table 1). Small areas of leafy and spicy vegetables, dill, parsley, sorrel, spinach, lettuce, and garden cress also are grown.

Vegetable crops are cultivated in all regions of the country, however most production is concentrated in the Kopetdag subarea, which is highly favorable for intensive vegetable production. Vegetables are mainly cultivated in Alakh, Mary, Lebap and Dashoguz provinces. A tomato processing plant operates in Alakh province, Rukhabat region and has a daily processing capacity exceeding 60 tonnes of tomato fruit.

Table 1 Vegetable production in Turkmenistan for the period of 2001- Source: State Statistics Committee Vegetable crops are cultivated under irrigation in all regions of Turkmenistan. Each province has greenhouses with a typical area of 6 ha. Mostly hybrids of tomato and cucumber are cultivated in such greenhouses and grown from imported seeds.

Currently, the vegetable output of Turkmenistan doesnt meet the populations demand. The national plan is to increase annual per capita consumption of vegetables and melons to 42 kg by 2010 through increasing yield and the expanding areas of cultivation.

The current national program Strategy of Socio-economic Reforms in Turkmenistan for the Period to 2020 specifies the need for a considerable increase in the output of vegetables and melon crops.

The cultivated area of vegetable crops will increase to 40,000 ha by 2010 and 40,400 ha by 2020. It is also expected to increase vegetable crop output to 28.1 t/ha by 2010 and to 29.7 t/ha by 2020. The gross outputs of vegetable and melon will grow to 1,136 thousand tonnes and 1,200 thousand tonnes, correspondingly.

Factors constraining vegetable production New vegetable crop varieties are required to increase vegetable yield and quality. These need to be heat resistant, disease and pest tolerant, with high yield and good taste. The introduction of new technology into agriculture is also required.

State registration of vegetable crop varieties Vegetable crop varieties created by republican scientists as well as imported varieties have been registered for use in Turkmenistan. The tomato varieties Kopetdag, Gok yayla and Balkan have successfully passed the state varietal testing trials and have been registered for use throughout Turkmenistan. Kopetdag is a medium-early variety with a yield potential of 45-60 t/ha. The Balkan variety is a late maturing type with a yield potential of 40-54 t/ha. Among registered tomato varieties, the largest area is occupied by the Gok yayla variety, with a potential yield of 60-80 t/ha.

As a result of many years of research, national scientists have also selected new high-yielding, heat resistant cucumber varieties with good taste qualitiesGyaurs-3, TOSO-1 and Ahal. The cucumber varieties Gyaurs-3 and TOSO-1 were also registered for use in Turkmenistan. Their yield is equal to 20-25 t/ha. The fruits are consumed in both the fresh and preserved forms. Compared to the registered variety Margelan novyi, the indigenous variety Ahal has a higher resistance to mildew.

Vegetable seed production Super-elite and elite seeds of tomato, cucumber and other crops are produced in the Ahal Scientific Production Centre under the Research Institute of Crop Husbandry.

National program and research The national research program is oriented toward the scientific management and development of agricultural crops, including varietal selection. A key priority is the creation of heat resistant and high-yielding vegetable crop varieties with high-grade fruits both for fresh consumption and processing. Developing new varieties to be disease resistant and grow well under the hot, dry and strongly continental climate are key priorities for the Research Institute for Crop Husbandry under the Ministry of Agriculture. Most current research is focused on tomato, cucumber, pepper, eggplant and potato. At the moment, the scientists of the Research Institute for Crop Husbandry are studying over 40 varieties and hybrids of promising cucumber lines. Valuable breeding material for further selection activity has been created and is the result of selection and seed production work.

8 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Partnerships The Research Institute for Crop Husbandry is collaborating with state organizations, farms and the private sector.

Collaboration with AVRDC the World Vegetable Centre began in 2005. Representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture and Water Management and scientific organizations in the republic participated in the international workshop on: Improved Income and Nutrition in Central Asia and the Caucasus through Enhanced Market- and Trade-oriented Vegetable Systems Research and Development held in April 2005 in Tashkent. Two specialists participated in training courses on vegetable crop varietal testing in Taiwan and Uzbekistan. In 2006 the Research Institute for Crop Husbandry participated in the regional varietal trials for vegetable crops.

Further involvement of the Research Institute in the implementation of the AVRDC regional program is required for more focused work in vegetable crop selection. We need to exchange seed collections, not only of tomato, but of cucumber, pepper, eggplant and other crops.

National strategies and plans for the development of vegetable production An increase in the yields and total production of vegetable crops will be observed by 2010 due to expansion of the cultivated area. From 2010 the cultivated areas will stay at the same level, and future growth in vegetable output is expected to be due to yield increase per area unit (Table 2).

Table 2 Trend of the growth of the vegetable crop output in Turkmenistan to Indicators Gross output, thousand tonnes Source: State Statistics Committee 40 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Uzbekistan - Prof. Botir Azimov Introduction Uzbekistans 27.7 million people consume 84 kg of vegetables per capita each year. The country aims to increase vegetable output to meet growing demand, with the goal of producing 4.2 million tonnes of vegetables, 1.1 million tonnes of melons, and 1.6 million tonnes of potato by by 2011. To reach this goal, yield should be not less than 30-35 t/ha for vegetables and melons, and 25t/ha for potato.

Scientific and technological progress can improve the efficiency of agricultural production in the vegetable growing sector. However, there are few incentives for scientists to participate in vegetable research, or to introduce new technologies to farm workers.

If the agricultural sciences can become self-supporting, scientists can pursue intensive research to accelerate progress in vegetable production.

National policy in the vegetable production sector By a January 2006 presidential decree, 4714 vegetable farms and 30,719 farms for fruit crop and grape cultivation were established on land from 219 shirkat (collective) farms. Farmers now own their land.

Factors constraining vegetable production Uzbekistan has soil and climatic conditions favorable to year-round vegetable cultivation. However, vegetables are grown under irrigation in Uzbekistan, and in some areas a shortage of irrigation water limits vegetable cultivation. On salt-affected land, yield is low. Research institutes need advanced devices, funding, and trained personnel to introduce new technologies for vegetable production and to improve the material and technical infrastructure.

State registration of vegetable crop varieties Research institutes create new varieties and submit them to the State Variety Trial Commission (SVTC) for primary registration. The SVTC transfers these varieties to its 50 zone branches, which operate in all provinces of the republic. Varieties are field-tested in these areas for three years. Varieties demonstrating positive results are regionalized for the provinces soil and climatic conditions.

Pedigree varieties are included in the state registry of agricultural crops recommended for cultivation in Uzbekistan.

The inclusion or exclusion of varieties from the registry is based on recommendations of the SVTC and other experts.

Vegetable seed production Research institutes and their experimental stations handle the primary seed production of vegetable crops. Special Uzsabzavotnavuruglari association farms deal with large-scale seed production. In most instances, the quality of seed produced is poor; improvement is needed in seed production.

Due to a lack of funds, during the recent years Uzsabzavotnavuruglari has not concluded any agreements with scientific institutions to supply of pedigree seeds. Large quantities of pedigree seed are sold directly to private seed sellers and dekhkan (private) farms.

Resources The Uzbek Research Institute of Vegetable, Melon Crops and Potato (UzRIPI) is located in Tashkent, with eight base stations in the republics eight provinces. A total of 175 employees work in the Institute, including 35 scientists. However, the Institutes laboratory equipment is outdated. New and advanced equipment is not available.

Since 2002, the Centre of Science and Technology has awarded grants on a competitive basis for basic scientific research and applied technical research. In 2006, the Centre provided a grant to the Institute for UZS 95,325,000a UZS 25,841,000 increase over the 2005 grant.

The Uzbek Research Institute of Plant Industry implements activities on plant genetic resource conservation and primary analysis. Activities on some vegetable crops are carried out at Tashkent State Agrarian University and Samarkand Agricultural Institute.

National program and research The countrys program on vegetable production research and development is underway. From 2000-2006 Uzbek plant breeders created 33 new varieties. For open ground production: 3 cucumber varieties, 9 tomato varieties, 2 varieties each of white cabbage, sweet pepper, onion and winter radish;

and one variety each of lettuce, parsley, dill, spinach, fennel, sweet corn, carrot, turnip, vegetable pea and radish. For sheltered production: one cucumber variety and 2 tomato varieties were created. Some of the newly created varieties are suitable for transportation, with good marketable fruit style; others are suitable for processing, with good technological qualities and a high concentration of soluble dry matters. Varieties for drying and freezing with compact fruit pulp and a high concentration of insoluble pectins and cellulose have been developed. By 2011, breeders expect to submit to SVTC 11 new promising varieties and 6 F1 hybrids of vegetable crops, 4 varieties of melon and 4 varieties Nine vegetable production projects are funded in whole or in part by the state. Three are melon projects and 4 are projects on potato; 2 projects (one on melon crop pests and the other on primary seed production of a new potato variety) are sponsored by international funds.

42 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting Partnerships Every year scientists publish agricultural guidelines on individual vegetable crops to assist farmers.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Water Management (MAWM) also aids farmers by providing annual guidelines on vegetable crop cultivation.

Collaboration with AVRDC The World Vegetable Center Collaboration with AVRDC began in 2005. Representatives from MAWM, the Uzbek Scientific and Production Centre, and the Institutes actively participated in the International Meeting Workshop on:

Improved Income and Nutrition in Central Asia and the Caucasus through Enhanced Market- and Trade-oriented Vegetable Systems Research and Development held in April 2005 in Tashkent.

Ecological testing of 48 accessions of vegetable crops was arranged in 2005 by the Uzbek Research Institute of Plant Industry. The Regional AVRDC Office in Tashkent provided the required literature, methodology on the vegetable crop analysis in Russian, as well as prepared field records; during the growing period AVRDC staff held activities and training for participants. Promising accessions were distinguished and their seeds were propagated. Two promising lines each of soybean and mungbean were submitted to the SVTC.

In 20052006, three specialists were trained in operating vegetable crop trials at AVRDC headquarters in Taiwan; another specialist attended the regional training course in Tashkent. One vegetable production specialist was trained in the regional English language course.

AVRDC provided 21 varieties and lines of tomato, pepper and soybean for the regional variety trials.

In Uzbekistan, the research was conducted in various ecological areas, including the quarantine nursery of UzRIPI (Tashkent province) and Mamun Academy (Khorezm province).

In total, AVRDC provided 147 varieties for trials and lines of 10 vegetable crops for the genebank.

Three nontraditional crops were introduced, including vegetable soybean, Chinese leafy cabbage (Pekinese cabbage) and asparagus. The accessions of these vegetable crops are under study and tentative positive results already have been obtained on some crops.

In 2005 AVRDC provided assistance to identify viruses on 17 accessions of tomato, eggplant, pepper and pumpkin from Uzbekistan. Currently, with AVRDCs assistance, the Uzbek Research Institute of Vegetable, Melon Crops & Potato has started creating an electronic database of regionalized varieties.

In 2006 the Institute received a grant from the Centre on Science and Technology of Uzbekistan to launch a study of economically valuable vegetable soybean traits to select promising lines for submission to the State Variety Trial. Specialists from the AVRDC-CAC regional office in Tashkent, Uzbek Research Institute of Plant Industry, and Tashkent State Agrarian University are involved in the project, under the supervision of the Uzbek Scientific and Production Centre of Agriculture. The annual funding amount is UZS 10,000,000 (USD 8000) National strategies and plans for the development of vegetable production Vegetable production in Uzbekistan can grow in one of two ways: Either by expanding vegetable crop cultivation areas, or by increasing yield per area unit. Because irrigation facilities are limited, the second way is more applicable to Uzbekistans conditions. Vegetables are grown on only 2.5-3% of irrigated land.

There is an opportunity to grow vegetables on over the more than 1,000,000 ha of land released after the grain crop is harvested. Currently, vegetable crops are cultivated after the grain harvest on only about 30-35,000 ha.

Crop allocations can support the demand for vegetables from the Uzbek people, the processing industry, and exporters. To meet this demand, tomato would need to occupy 40% of cultivated area under vegetables, onion 30%, cucumber 8%, white cabbage 6%, carrot 8%, and other vegetable crops, 8%. For the entire tomato area, 40% should be planted with early ripening and middle-early varieties, 40% with mid-season varieties and 20% with late-ripening varieties.

Uzbekistan plant breeders need to intensify selection activities to create improved hybrids of tomato, cucumber, carrot and pepper. New varieties and heterotic hybrids should be disease resistant, have early maturity, transport well, and offer good flavor, color and other desirable qualities.

44 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting

AGREEMENT

AGREEMENT

ON THE FRAMEWORK OF THE WORKING PROGRAM FOR THE CENTRAL ASIA

AND CAUCASUS REGIONAL NETWORK FOR VEGETABLE SYSTEMS RESEARCH

AND DEVELOPMENT (CACVEG)

PREAMBLE

1. Whereas, the Central Asian and Caucasian republics accord that vegetables have a great potential to provide micronutrients and other health-promoting factors, as well as to generate incomes;

2. And whereas, in order to accelerate development of the vegetable systems of Central Asian and Caucasian republics, the needs have been recognized for improved varieties; productive, sustainable and safe production technologies; efficient handling, processing, and marketing systems, and trained human resources for research and development (R&D);

3. And whereas, many of the problems in the production, handling, processing and utilization of vegetables are common to all Central Asian and Caucasian republics;

4. And whereas, there is much scope for mutual gain through collaboration and complementation in research and in exchange and sharing of germplasm, information and expertise, not only among Central Asian and Caucasian republics but also with expertise found outside the region;

5. And whereas, AVRDC-The World Vegetable Center is engaged in research and training related to the development of improved vegetable varieties and enhanced technologies for economically producing and marketing vegetables to raise the living standard of people in the developing world;

6. Thus, all 82 participants of the Workshop on "Improved Income and Nutrition in Central Asia and the Caucasus through Enhanced Market- and Trade-oriented Vegetable Systems Research and Development" held on 25-27 April 2005 in Tashkent, Uzbekistan recommended the establishment of the Central Asia and the Caucasus Regional Network for Vegetable Systems Research and Development, hereinafter referred to as CACVEG, to serve as the regional framework for collaborative vegetable systems

ARTICLE I: OBJECTIVES

7. CACVEG has the following specific objectives:

a. To promote sustainable and improved production of quality and safe vegetables for consumption, processing, trade and to develop indigenous vegetable-related industries within Central Asia and the Caucasus (CAC) region b. To foster collaborative research partnerships among the national agricultural research systems (NARS) in areas of common interest, to attain better and more efficient use of the expertise, technologies, germplasm and scarce resources available within CAC c. To facilitate the generation and adoption of improved technologies for vegetable systems R&D through collaborative research, information exchange and scientific d. To strengthen the technical proficiency of vegetable professionals with scientific capability to respond to the national and regional needs for efficient and sustained e. To strengthen linkages for acquisition and exchange of relevant information and technologies among and outside the CAC region

ARTICLE II: FUNCTIONS

8. In pursuit of its objectives, CACVEG is to perform the following functions:

a. Coordinate and foster collaboration and complementary research and technical exchanges, taking into account the institutional strengths, weaknesses and needs of b. Through consultation and periodic network meetings, identify major research needs of common concern, develop collaborative plans, and monitor and evaluate collaborative c. Improve the mechanisms for strengthening communication and rapid exchange level of technology and information derived from collaborative R&D d. Identify training needs among CAC republics and conduct group and individual e. Facilitate financial and technical support to enable NARS to play lead roles to solve specific regional research problems.

ARTICLE III: GOVERNANCE

9. The Governance of CACVEG resides in the Steering Committee composed of one senior official nominated by adjustment with government of each CAC republic. The Steering Committee will meet once a year during which time a Chairperson will be elected from among the republic representatives.

10. The Steering Committee has the following responsibilities:

a. Set policy and priorities, and approve the strategic plan of the network b. Review and approve the annual work plans and budgets of the network c. Monitor and assess progress of the network and report to the member republics d. Mobilize resources within and outside the CAC region for CACVEG 4 Proceedings of the CAC Vegetable R&D Network First Steering Committee Meeting

ARTICLE IV: EXECUTING AGENCY



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