Acacia conference

International Conference on Acacia species

March 12, 2014

The Tigray Agricultural Research Institute (TARI) in Ethiopia has been implementing World Vision Australia Funded project in collaboration with world vision Ethiopia and other national and region partners. The Project entitled as “Acacia Species for Food Security and Environmental Rehabilitation in the dryland areas of Northern Ethiopia” has been implemented since March 2010 mainly in three districts of eastern zone namely Kiltew-Awlaelo, S/Tsaeda –Emba and Atsbi-Wemberta to contribute to the efforts underway to improve food security and environmental rehabilitation situation in the dry land areas of Northern Ethiopia. The project objectives were mainly to address the role of Australian acacias in general and Acacia saligna in particular for rehabilitation of degraded drylands, food and feed security and capacity building and awareness creation on the species multi-service functions and benefits. Acacia saligna has been introduced to Tigray region for environmental rehabilitation purposes in 1980s and planted extensively since 2000 and has not exhibited any signs of weediness. Currently, this species is being recognized as a multipurpose tree species mainly since the inception of this project and demonstrated its future potential ability for food security, agroforestry promotion and also enabling the community to adapt the changing climate. Accordingly, based on the three years research outputs and other countries experiences, TARI in collaboration world vision has organized this international conference with the following main objectives and expected outputs/outcomes.

Conference Objectives

  • To share and review research outputs of Acacia saligna tree and set modalities of their scaling up mechanisms and strategies
  • To exchange knowledge and experiences on the contribution of  Australian Acacia species to the efforts underway to improve food and feed security and adapt to the changing climate
  • To facilitate and strengthen the collaboration between governmental and non-governmental organizations for the completion of Acacia seed food safety and human volunteer trials through officially approved procedures for its use as a human food
  • To synthesise ideas that help to formulate a new proposal to complete the ongoing and remaining research  activities of the project and scale up successful findings

Expected Conference Outcomes/outputs

  • Well informed participants on the value and potential role of Australian acacias in general and the multipurpose benefits and services  of Acacia saligna in Tigray, Ethiopia
  • Experiences shared among different countries and concrete commitments developed to ensure that action will be taken for further development and promotion of Australian Acacias as a strategy for food security and climate change adaptation and mitigation
  • Synthesized ideas (gaps and opportunities) for formulation of a new proposal to complete the ongoing and remaining research and development activities
  • Modalities set out on how to scale up identified technologies of A. saligna
  • Partner institutions identified and their collaboration strengthened to work together on Acacia seed safety and human volunteer trials and official approval granted for dissemination and promotion of the seeds as human food.
  • Published proceeding of the conference for wider distribution and networking

For additional information, you can download the summaries of the papers presented orally during the conference.