Georgia Peanut Tour 2016

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MFK Agriculture Research Fellow Georgy Faroutine with University of Georgia agriculture faculty members Tim Brenneman and Albert Culbreath

I am Georgy Faroutine, Meds & Food for Kids Agriculture Research Fellow. As part of my work with MFK, I am currently developing agriculture research work in the North and Centre Departments of Haiti. The main goal of my work is to conduct high-quality peanut agricultural research in order to improve peanut production in the country. I am working in collaboration with the PMIL (Peanut & Mycotoxin Innovation Lab) research team in implementing experimental research trials to identify peanut varieties with high productivity potential and resistance against foliar diseases that can be successfully planted in Haiti.

As part of my research work, I was invited by the PMIL staff to participate with them in a training session at the University of Georgia. During my stay in Georgia, I participated in the 30th Annual Georgia Peanut Tour, which took place in Tifton and surrounding areas from September 13-15, 2016. More than 200 people, mostly scientists, graduate students, and growers, came from different parts of the United States and several countries in Africa to participate in this activity. Over the three days, we visited the Georgia Museum of Agriculture, a peanut buying point, a shelling plant, a processing plant, the University of Georgia Research Station at Lang & Blackshank Farm, and some large family farms. I heard presentations on several topics related to peanut production and attended a farm harvest demonstration using the latest type of harvesting implements for peanuts.

Georgy inspects a peanut with Univ. of GA professor Tim Brenneman
Georgy inspects a peanut with Univ. of GA professor Tim Brenneman

During this tour, I had the opportunity to converse with scientists and other key players in the peanut production and processing industry. This gave me a first-hand view about the peanut supply chain in a developed country and helped me understand how important peanuts are in the food chain. The experience has also enabled me to envision real possibilities for the improvement of peanut production in Haiti. The Georgia Peanut Tour 2016 was a learning experience for me and all the participants. I am staying here in the United States until the end of this week, receiving mentoring from University of Georgia and University of Florida faculty and working with them. It has been a very enlightening experience for me, and I am grateful for this opportunity to be part of the collaboration between PMIL and MFK.