Cristián Pichuante, AGV: "The quality of the plants largely determines their productive potential"

"Our challenge is to continue positioning Chile among the powers of quality plant production"

The president of the Chilean Nursery Association (AGV), Cristián Pichuante, inaugurated the 5th International Agro Plant Ñuble Convention, held online, and in which different authorities from the agrofruticultural industry participated, led by the Minister of Agriculture, Antonio Walker, the director of the Agricultural and Livestock Service (SAG), Horacio Bórquez, and the president of the Federation of Fruit Exporters (Fedefruta), Jorge Valenzuela, among other authorities.

"In the midst of the challenging times that run, we are fortunate to belong to agriculture, without a doubt one of the activities least impacted by the pandemic worldwide and that most of us develop with passion, transforming into a philosophy of life that does not exempt from ups and downs reflects the great commitment we have for our field and our people ”, were his opening words to an online audience that spanned several Latin American countries.

The executive took the time to contextualize the moment the industry is experiencing and the challenges that arise from it. "In this new scenario, which already includes climate change, and the increasingly long scarcity of water, the challenges facing our agriculture also involve taking a more leading role in the changes that as a society we are experiencing, thus seeking to generate better job opportunities, development and well-being for our country ”, he stressed.

Produce responsibly

Cristian Pichuante commented that, in this context of multiple challenges, the responsibility is to continue improving production processes, and in that perspective he relates that they have begun to work on an ambitious project that will allow them, in the short term, to deliver plants with a certified quality seal, propagated under more friendly processes, both in the social and environmental aspects.

He explains that despite the difficulties they have had to face to carry out the nursery industry, the union has managed to commercialize in Chile between 2015 and 2019 more than 134 million fruit plants, which meant around 110 thousand hectares.

Not just numbers

"As a fundamental pillar of any agricultural project, our field takes on special relevance since the quality of the plants largely determines their productive potential," he stressed.

Pichuante, in his speech as host of the meeting, makes a call not to be left alone in the reality of numbers and asks: What is our challenge?

"We want to continue on the path of positioning Chile among the powers in the production of quality plants for the national market and a foreign platform for the world," he answered.

The president of AGV acknowledges that the commitment of partner nurseries and the development of strategic alliances with other sectors have been very important in this work, "such as the one we have with ProChile, which are vital," he says.

Global platform

Cristián Pichuante concludes by explaining that in order to face the challenges of the plant genetics industry, the objective is to become a “genetic platform for the world” and recalls that in 2011 they exported plants worth USD11 million, and they ranked 44th worldwide . "Today we can proudly show that our union managed to export over USD36 million in 2019, jumping to 24th place as an exporting country of top quality plants."

According to the projections of the Chilean Nursery Association for 2021, Chile will be around USD50 million in exports of first quality plants for the global industry.

Martín Carrillo O. - Blueberries Consulting

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