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RASP – Rural Association Support Program, organized on December 19, 2019, at Hotel “Waterfall” in Belsh, workshop on: Awareness raising of local stakeholders for diversification of products and activities in Belsh Municipality. This workshop was organized as part of the Project: “Increasing the Capacity of Farmers and Other Stakeholders in Diversifying Rural Activities”, funded by FAO (Food Organization of the United Nations).

The workshop was organized by RASP in cooperation with the Municipality of Belsh and aimed at raising awareness of farmers and rural producers in this area regarding the diversification of farms and products as well as identifying the needs of farmers to increase and strengthen their capacities in development and diversification. products and the possibility of benefiting from EU IPARD funds and national schemes for agriculture.

Participants in this workshop were representatives of Belsh Municipality, specialists of the Extended Service Office of Elbasan and Belsh, farmers and producers of agricultural and livestock products, fruit growing, medicinal plants, agro-tourism, etc..

The workshop was attended by the representative of FAO Office in Albania, Mr. Ilir Halilaj, who greeted the participants, made a presentation of the mission and vision of the FAO office in Albania in support of agricultural activities and small and family farms in some rural areas of the country.

Through presentations in the ppt by RASP experts and FAO expert were addressed issues related to the diversification of products, activities and services in rural Belsh area and were informed about the possibility of applying farmers and producers of this area in the IPARD program funded by the EU and other support from national schemes for agriculture.

Exercise session in separate tables, with some groups of farmers organized according to specific products / activities such as: production and processing of livestock products, medicinal / aromatic plants, horticulture, agrotourism etc. identified problems and the need for support the capacities of farmers and producers in relation to product quality, the cooperation of farmers and producers, marketing aspects as well as the recognition and fulfillment of quality criteria and standards required by the market.

Ongoing activities in this municipality will focus primarily on providing expertise and training to extension service specialists and area farmers mainly in the areas of product diversification, farmers and producers cooperation, marketing, quality standards, etc.

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