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Upcoming Workshop:

Upcoming Workshop:

‘Training on fruits and nuts processing technologies’

TU Osh, Kyrgyzstan

5th to 6th June 2024

On 5th and 6th June partners of the SUFACHAIN consortium will give a two-day training on fruits and nuts processing technologies to be held at Osh Technological University, Kyrgyzstan.

The training will provide training and information on

  • Processing and drying technologies,
  • Quality control measures,
  • Control of infections pests of dried fruits and berries,
  • Processing of food waste.

The training is part of the research and innovation project ‘Promoting sustainable land management through product, process and SME development in agroforestry value chains of Central Asia (SUFACHAIN)’. As part of the project, products and technologies are developed that aim to contribute to the sustainable use of resources and enhance the quality of dried fruits in particular for creating local value.

During the training we will have access to the laboratory facilities of the department “Technology of Processing of Agricultural Products” of Osh Technological University meeting European standards for food and processing. Costs for transport, accommodation and food will be covered by project.

The training will be conducted by Associate Prof. Dr. Smanalieva J.N., Associate Prof., k.t.s. J.K. Irmatova, Ph.D., and k b.s. Israilova G. C. Costs for transport, accommodation and food will be covered by the project.

Citizens of Kyrgyzstan with orchards or processing plants are invited to participate. Please let us know about participation by filling out this form https://forms.gle/Uq8PcpFVGqf4KoJ89 

by 05/20/2024. The training will be held in Kyrgyz language.

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SUFACHAIN project workshop in Tashkent, Uzbekistan

SUFACHAIN project workshop in Tashkent, Uzbekistan

Tashkent, Uzbekistan, April 25-26th April 2024

On 25th and 26th April, 16 scientists, five entrepreneurs and representatives from four civil society organizations from Germany and Central Asia participated at the Tashkent Institute of Irrigation and Agricultural Mechanization Engineers Institute (TIIAME), National Research University, Uzbekistan, for the workshop of the SUFACHAIN project.

The SUFACHAIN project is a collaborative effort between universities, research institutions, NGOs, and agribusiness SMEs in Germany, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, sponsored by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The project intends to promote sustainable land management and agroforestry value chains in Central Asia by developing knowledge and technologies aimed at increasing the profitability, resource efficiency, and product quality in the cultivation, processing and marketing for a variety of fruits and nuts.

The workshop was opened with welcome addresses presented by Otabek Mahkamov, Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Higher Education, Science and Innovations of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Prof. Dr. Bakhadir Mirzaev, Rector of TIIAME, Prof. Dr. Dilfuza Egamberdieva of TIIAME, Zokir Rakhimov of the Ministry of Ecology, Environmental Protection & Climate Change of Uzbekistan, Prof. Dr. Dietrich Darr of Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences (HSRW), Germany. During the event, participants engaged in structured discussions reviewing the overall research agenda and progress and existing constraints. Additionally, respective working groups comprising of scientific experts (including HSRW, TU Dresden, I. Razzakov Kyrgyz State Technical University, Kyrgyz-Turkish Manas University, Uzbek National University, industry partners (Organic Services GmbH, KAFLU, DANECO, Altyn Bak LLC, Global Agro Trade and Logistics Centre LLC) and international organizations (Aga Khan Foundation, GIZ, UNDP, KIVA / KRASS and World Agroforestry Center) discussed opportunities for mutual contribution to collectively achieve sustainable development in Central Asia through the adoption of innovative agroforestry systems. Further project funding opportunities were highlighted by Dr. Peter Liebelt from CASIB.

After completion of the workshop, with support of local partners, the research group from Germany and Central Asia visited several agroforestry sites and corresponding value chains in the Fergana Valley region of Uzbekistan. Participants gained firsthand insight into the operations and processes of fruit and nut production, including apples, apricots, peach, and grapes. Lastly, an organic farming facility was visited as an example for contemporary agroforestry practice in the Fergana Valley region for papaya, kiwi, olives, lavender and the production of medicinal plants. The excursion allowed the group to identify experimental sites for further research to foster sustainable land management within the scope of agroforestry practices in Central Asia.

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Event Workshop in Tashkent

Scientific Conference ‘Sustainable Agroforestry Value Chains of Nut and Fruit Systems in Central Asia’, Tashkent, Uzbekistan, 25th April 2024

In the context of the annual SUFACHAIN project meeting, we are organising a scientific conference on ‘Sustainable Agroforestry Value Chains of Nut and Fruit Systems in Central Asia’.

The conference will take place on 25th April at the Institute of Fundamental and Applied Research, National Research University TIIAME in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.

Among others, our PhD researchers will present their preliminary results and research plans within the SUFACHAIN project.

In the afternoon we want to use the opportunity and discuss research perspectives in sustainable agroforestry value chains in Central Asia with different stakeholders from Uzbekistan.

A preliminary programme can be found here: Download PDF

If you are interested to join, please register here before 19th April : Registration

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Successful Webinar on Carbon Certification in Agroforestry Systems in Central Asia

Successful Webinar on Carbon Certification in Agroforestry Systems in Central Asia

22 January 2024

On 12 December 2023 we organised a webinar on carbon certification for agroforestry systems in Central Asia, which was attended by around 40 people from across Central Asia. The webinar was conducted with the support of colleagues from Sustainable AG, Dr. Rainer Nerger and Clara Larissa Wriesnegger, who provided an introduction into agroforestry systems and carbon sequestration in Central Asia and gave an overview of commonly used carbon calculation methods and carbon standard certifications. An excel tool was presented that can help decision makers to select adequate carbon calculation methods for their own work.

Recordings of the webinar can be found here (introduction in Russian, presentations in English). Presentations of the webinar can be accessed here.

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Walnut shells as ingredients for cosmetics: Rhine-Waal University project researches alternatives to microplastics with Kalkar-based company

News

Walnut shells as ingredients for cosmetics: Rhine-Waal University project researches alternatives to microplastics with Kalkar-based company

12 December 2023

Microplastics have been banned in cosmetics and detergents since October 2023. But what alternatives are there? Researchers at Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences want to find out together with the family-run company bb med. product GmbH from Lower Rhine area. The idea: walnut shells and apricot kernels could be the solution and thus protect the environment. And farmers in Kyrgyzstan could also benefit from utilising this original waste. A win-win-win solution!

Read the full article here.

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SUFACHAIN Event 12 December 2023

Event

Online workshop on Carbon Certification in Agroforestry Systems in Central Asia

12 December 2023

  • What is carbon sequestration in the context of Central Asian agroforestry systems?
  • Which calculation measures for carbon sequestration exist?
  • What are the current certification standards for carbon and ecosystem services?

On Tuesday, 12th December 2023 at 10 am (Berlin time)/ 3 pm (Bishkek time) our partner Sustainable AG will give an online workshop to discuss these questions as part of the research project SUFACHAIN.

The workshop will be held in English, simultaneous translation into Russian will be provided.

Please send an E-Mail to sufachain@hochschule-rhein-waal.de for the registration steps.

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What do walnut forests in Kyrgyzstan have to do with cosmetics manufacturers in the Lower Rhine region? – Studium Generale Event at Rhine-Waal University

What do walnut forests in Kyrgyzstan have to do with cosmetics manufacturers in the Lower Rhine region? – Studium Generale Event at Rhine-Waal University

21 November 2023

On 21st November, Philip Schierning, Prof. Bockmühl (Rhine-Waal University) and Robert Beinio and Marian Rademacher (bbmed. product GmbH) presented the SUFACHAIN project to the general public at Campus Kleve.

The Rhine-Waal University (HSRW) regularly invites the general public to the so called Studium Generale – a lecture series on publicly relevant topics and related to the research of the HSRW. This semester the overarching topic of the lecture series is ‘Sustainability in the Region’.

The SUFACHAIN colleagues presented their work under the SUFACHAIN project and how the walnut forests in Kyrgyzstan link to the cosmetic industry in the Lower Rhine region.

The walnut forests in Kyrgyzstan provide an important livelihood for the local population, while the overexploitation of the world’s largest natural walnut forests is increasingly threatening their populations. The creation of sustainable agroforestry systems with walnuts is intended to reduce the pressure on these forests. In addition, the raw material efficiency in walnut processing has so far been low and walnut shells are often an unused waste product. In order to increase the local added value of these systems, improve raw material efficiency and reduce the pressure on natural forests, researchers of HSRW and their partners from bbmed from Kalkar in the Lower Rhine are looking at ways of using these supposed waste products in the international cosmetics industry, for example to replace microplastics in skin cosmetics such as scrubs.

Prior to the event, a related article based on an interview with Prof. Bockmühl and his work on microplastic substitutes has been published in the German newspaper NRZ and is worth a read: https://sufachain.org/sufachain-related-research-in-the-local-news-cosmetics-without-microplastic-are-walnut-shells-the-solutionvbjd1

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SUFACHAIN-related research in the local news: Cosmetics without microplastic: Are walnut shells the solution?

SUFACHAIN-related research in the local news: Cosmetics without microplastic: Are walnut shells the solution?

15 November 2023

Prof. Bockmühl, microbiology researcher under the SUFACHAIN project, recently gave an interview about the use of walnut shells to substitute microplastics in cosmetics, which was published in an article of the German newspaper NRZ.

Under SUFACHAIN, Prof. Bockmühl and his PhD candidate Binal Dobariya from Rhine-Waal University together with two German SME partners are doing research on the feasibility of ground walnut and apricot core shells as exfoliating particles to replace abrasive synthetic particles (‘microplastics’) in the cosmetic industry. Their research aims at contributing to improved walnut and apricot value chains through the better use of waste streams. Learn more about the objectives of this work package here.

In a recent news article in the German newspaper NRZ, Prof. Bockmühl elaborates on this research and how it relates to the wider project. So far walnut shells and apricot kernels are often considered a waste product in the local walnut and apricot value chains in Central Asia. At the same time, ‘apricot scrub’ already exists as a product at the local and regional markets as a peeling product. Now, with the recent EU microplastic ban, these products become also attractive for the EU market. Microplastics can be found in toothpaste and facial peeling products and function as mechanic cleansing. The challenge to substitute these plastic particles with walnut or apricot core shells lies in their sharp edges (especially the walnut shells) and the question of how to microbiologically pre-treat the shells to ensure their safe use in cosmetic products. To use them in bio-cosmetic products, this means that radiation is not an option for treatment. To ensure applicability in practice, Prof. Bockmühl and his colleagues closely collaborate with cosmetic manufacturer bb med from Kalkar and A+S Biotec from Völklingen.

One concrete objective of the research project is to establish a pilot plant in Central Asia to ensure research findings are being linked to practical innovations. However, this is yet the beginning of the research phase, while market implementation of these products may take another five to ten years, thus going beyond the project’s lifetime. This initiative will also not solve the microplastic problem in Europe, Prof. Bockmühl emphasises, which comes to much larger extent from tires and sports fields. But it is a step in the right direction.

Read the full (German) article: https://www.nrz.de/region/niederrhein/kosmetik-ohne-mikroplastik-sind-walnussschalen-die-loesung-id240573360.html

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SUFACHAIN project kicks off to promote sustainable land management in Central Asia

News

SUFACHAIN project kicks off to promote sustainable land management in Central Asia

Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, March 17, 2023

On 13 and 14 March, 22 scientists, eight entrepreneurs and representatives from five civil society organisations from Germany and Central Asia gathered at the Plaza Hotel in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, to kick off the SUFACHAIN project. The workshop was opened with welcome addresses presented by Dr. Hendrik Meurs on behalf of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, the Vice-rector for academic work of I. Razzakov Kyrgyz State Technical University, Associate Prof. Rimma Elemanova, and Prof. Dr. Dietrich Darr of Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences. During the event, participants engaged in structured discussions highlighting the overall research agenda and existing constraints. Additionally, respective working groups comprising of scientific experts (including Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences, TU Dresden, I. Razzakov Kyrgyz State Technical University, National Academy of Science of KR, Kyrgyz-Turkish Manas University, Mountain Society Research Institute, German-Kazakh University and Uzbek National University), industry partners (Organic Services GmbH, KAFLU, DANECO, Altyn Bak LLC, Global Agro Trade and Logistics Centre LLC, Advantex and Kyrgyz Community Based Tourism) and international organizations (Aga Khan Foundation, GIZ, UNDP, KIVA / KRASS and World Agroforestry Center) discussed opportunities for mutual contribution to collectively achieve sustainable development in Central Asia through the adoption of innovative agroforestry systems.

After completion of the workshop, with support of local partners, the research group from Germany and Central Asia visited the agroforestry sites and corresponding value chain s in the Batken region. Participants gained first-hand insights into the operations and processes in the local farmer cooperatives, peri-urban markets, and food processing enterprises. The visit allowed the group to identify experimental sites, collect fruit and nut samples for further research to foster sustainable land management within the scope of agroforestry practices in Central Asia. “The SUFACHAIN project is very beneficial and necessary not only for Kyrgyzstan, but the whole Central Asia to develop effective agroforestry systems. I am sure that the project will provide an excellent scientific base for the practical realization of various agroforestry methods and use the natural resources more efficiently,“ said Aitkul Burkhanov, the General Director of the Kyrgyz Association of Forest and Land Users.

The SUFACHAIN project is a collaborative effort between universities, research institutions, NGOs, and agribusiness SMEs in Germany, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, sponsored by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The project intends to promote sustainable land management and agroforestry value chains in Central Asia by developing knowledge and technologies aimed at increasing the profitability, resource efficiency, and product quality in the cultivation, processing and marketing of apricots, walnuts and other fruits.

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