On June 24, 2016 the Center for Agribusiness and Rural Development (CARD) Foundation held the official opening ceremony of a new Farm Service Center in Meghri community of Syunik province, established within the frames of “Markets for Meghri” project, financed by the “Swiss Development Corporation” and in cooperation with a local investor Mr. Armen Avetisyan. The Center was founded by the financing of the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and in partnership with the “Advanced Rural Development Initiative” (ARDI) program, implemented by the “Fuller Center for Housing” and “Heifer Project International Armenia”.
Attending were the RA Deputy Minister of Territorial Administration and Emergency Situations Mr. Vache Terteryan, the RA Deputy Minister of Agriculture Mr. Armen Harutyunyan, Deputy Governor of Syunik province Mr. Vardan Davtyan, Regional Director for South Caucasus at the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) Mr. Olivier Burki, as well as representatives from SDC, USAID and CARD Foundation. In his opening speech Mr. Olivier Burki addressed the farmers: “Now the center is yours to develop the production of the legendary fruit and horticulture products of Meghri”.
The specialized center will focus on the development of the agricultural sector in Armenia and will promote advanced techniques and practices in farm business development. New Center will deliver a whole package of services to the local farms, establish links between the farmers and international organizations, offering supplies, equipment and information on advanced technologies for the agriculture development.
The center will be equipped with up-to-date equipment and tools, it will have a soil testing laboratory. The Center will also facilitate the development of new market links and help local farmers and SMEs access financial resources. The Center will cooperate with farmers, technicians of the adjacent communities, as well as the other Farm Service Centers, operating throughout the country.
The Farm Service Center will host regular workshops and training programs led by Armenian and foreign experts. They plan to serve more than 1800 local farmers from 13 communities in Meghri, Syunik province.