In October 2018, ECTAP together with the Sughd Administration organized a two-day International Agribusiness Investment Forum in Tajikistan, “Promoting the modernization of the fruits and vegetables value-chains in Tajikistan”. This Forum gathered more than 250 participants, including local stakeholders and leading international providers of technologies in the field. As a result of this event The French company M2i that has already managed to become the main European producer and developer of biological crop protection pheromones products came to Tajikistan and attended this forum. This company holds 14 families of patents, for more than 18 crops treated, and is referenced in more than 25 countries. M2i supplies pesticide-free solutions for biological protection of plants. It produces pheromones from the molecule synthesis to finished products in order to fight invasive pests. And it promotes risk-free solutions for human beings that also preserve biodiversity. Company participation was a clear signal of the willingness of M2i to develop its strategy in Central Asia, as it also sees large potential in the promotion of organic technologies in Tajikistan. Based on their level of technical capacity and their long-term interest for organic farming or alternatives to conventional use of agri-chemicals, ECTAP has selected local farmers who can implement testing activities of M2i products in close cooperation with ECTAP agronomist, M2i and AES Sarob and Neksigol. The project is conducting Bio control test in apple and tomato fields.
The Purpose of the testing of the M2i France biocontrol companies methodology for vegetable/fruits is to introduce farmers with new methodology of biocontrol of pests (Cut-worm, Vegetable moth, Whitefly and Mite) in vegetable and fruits fields to update farmers with improved agricultural practices for increasing volume of the yield and vegetable/fruit production. Bio control it is an efficient and ecological solution:
-no damage to the surrounding ecosystems and environment
-no development of resistance
-no toxicity to wildlife/ surrounding vegetation/ local residents/ users
-Adaptable to multiple applications, general public, private gardens, orchards, greenhouses.
ECTAP has already pre-selected two small-scale farms for greenhouse and open-field tomato in the Gissar and Rudaki districts, and two farms for apple (modern orchard) in the Gissar district. The project already started work on this initiative in Sughd region. Sarob cooperates with Test pilots in Gissar/Rudaki districts and Neksigol in Sughd region. As a result of these tests from 14th to 17th of April ECTAP experts were in the field to test the new technology, insects were identified and measures were taken to prevent spreading of them in the greenhouse and in the orchards. The products of Cybele Agrocare were used mainly for orchards and products of M2i for the greenhouses. Tuta absoluta were found in greenhouse and in the orchard codling moth were identified. The expert will monitor the process until the end of the cropping season and consult the farmers on the next steps. The project aims at regularly supporting this farmers to get feedback and based on that establish sustainability of this initiative. Currently Tajikistan has demand for organic crop production and this testing can open new perspective for Tajik farmers to produce organic agriculture products.