Last April, the Netherlands Water Partnership (NWP) and the Dutch Embassy in Spain organised a 'water & soil management for resilient agriculture' scoping mission in Murcia, Spain. The scoping mission ties in with a broad and intensive range of activities that NWP and its partners have developed in recent years at the water-agrifood nexus. The mission is an important stepping stone to a planned multi-day knowledge programme on water-soil-agrifood in Murcia later this year. The mission helped map the knowledge needs of Spanish partners working in agrifood production, such as companies, supply chain companies, governments, farmers’ organisations, and knowledge institutions.
Drought and soil salinisation
Farmers in Europe, and in Spain in particular, are facing major consequences because of drought and soil salinisation. These impact harvests and the quality of agricultural products. Healthy soil is crucial in making cropping systems resilient because it acts as a good water buffer and a source of nutrients. Healthy soil is the basis for the efficient use of water and nutrients, and a healthy and well maintained soil microbiome improves crop resistance.
“Both Spain and the Netherlands have a lot of experience in agri-development and water management in crop production in open fields,” says Peter Prins, Senior Advisor Water & Agriculture at NWP. “During the two-day scoping mission we met with various relevant stakeholders such as Spanish umbrella organisations, companies, research institutes, and the regional government to get a good understanding of their needs and mutual challenges.”
‘’Both Spain and the Netherlands have a lot of experience in agri-development and water management in crop production in open fields’’
Senior Advisor Water & Agriculture at NWP
Knowledge programme later in 2023
The knowledge programme on water-agrifood will focus on the exchange of knowledge and collaboration between Dutch and Spanish companies for healthy soil conditions and sustainable water management in open fields. The programme will be organised in cooperation with the regional Ministry of Water, Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, and Fisheries in Murcia.