İzmir Agricultural Technology Center cooperation and project partnership protocol was signed between the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry and İzmir Commodity Exchange. The signing ceremony was held on Thursday, November 12, 2020 under the auspices of Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Dr. Bekir Pakdemirli. The protocol was signed by TAGEM General Manager Dr. Nevzat Birişik on behalf of the Ministry and Chairperson Işınsu Kestelli on behalf of İzmir Commodity Exchange.
İzmir Governor Yavuz Selim Köşger, Ak Party İzmir Deputy Ceyda Bölünmez Çankırı, İzmir Chamber of Commerce Chairman Mahmut Özgener, Aegean Region Chamber of Industry Chairman Ender Yorgancılar attended the ceremony.
At the ceremony, Kestelli said, "As we have all witnessed, there is a rapid transformation of information technologies in the world. This trend appears as smart agricultural practices or agriculture 4.0. in the World. We should integrate these developments into the sector without neglecting the social dimension of agriculture in order to be more competitive in the future and internationally.
With this integration, improvements can be achieved in the areas of productivity and quality, access to reliable and healthy food, efficient and sustainable use of resources, real-time production performance evaluation, environmentally friendly agricultural production, reducing costs, and facilitating market access. With the center, we aim to develop the technological practise needed in these areas and to bring producers and agricultural technology entrepreneurs together. We think that İzmir is the most suitable place for such a center with agricultural production potential, academic infrastructure and innovative producers. The center will provide an habitat where designs, products and services can be tested and developed in a real life with real users and on products. In addition, it will prepare the ground for İzmir to be a center of attraction for initiatives in the field of agricultural technology and to be an R&D base for agricultural technologies in the transition process of agriculture 4.0.
Kestelli said that the positive acceptance of the project by the Ministry and the approval of the cooperation increased their enthusiasm. On behalf of the Exchange, I would like to express my gratitude to our general managers, especially the Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Dr. Bekir Pakdemirli, as well as to all ministry employees who have contributed, for providing us with this opportunity, and wish the project to be beneficial.