The “Development-Smart Innovation through Research in Agriculture (DeSIRA) initiative, launched in 2018, has been developed by the EU to foster a strong climate-relevant, productive and sustainable transformation of agriculture and food systems research for development. DeSIRA is about the use, access and generation of scientific knowledge for innovation to transform agriculture in the context of climate change.

DeSIRA aims to put more science into development considering that the solutions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) are context specifics. It contributes primarily to the achievement of SDG 1, 2, 5, 8,13 and 15. It also aims at supporting research and innovation projects in Africa, Asia, Latin America and strengthening research capacities and research governance involving key actors at national, regional, continental and global levels. The broad objective of the DeSIRA initiative is to contribute to climate-relevant, productive and sustainable transformation of agriculture and food systems in low and middle-incomes countries.

Following a call for expression of interest, Mauritius has been chosen for the implementation of a set of specific activities under the initiative “Supporting Sustainable Agriculture for Improved Food Security and Safety in the Republic of Mauritius”. In this respect, the Food and Agricultural Research and Extension Institute (FAREI) has been awarded a grant which aims at fostering innovation in agriculture through the consolidation of FAREI’s Research and Development capacity to address climate change challenges and development of climate smart practices for sustainable production in agriculture and food systems.

The specific objectives are:

  • Improve the level of food security and contribution of agriculture to the economy in the country;
  • Provide safe and quality food for the needs of local population and for export;
  • Promote sustainable management of land, water and other natural resources

In this respect, the FAREI has been awarded a grant of EUR 2 449 940 with the aim of fostering innovation in agriculture through the consolidation of the institute’s research and development capacity to address climate challenges and development of climate smart practices for sustainable production.

The implementation of the project has already been started and the project is to be completed over period 36 months.