Director General Dyno Keatinge recently toured vegetable production sites and school gardens in East Java and Bali funded by USAID.
AVRDC Director General Dyno Keatinge travelled to Indonesia for the first time on 1-10 October 2012, accompanied by Kartini Luther, Assistant to the Deputy Director General – Research and Joko Mariyono, Project Site Coordinator. At the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Jakarta office, Dyno visited with Michael Nehrbass, Director of Economic Growth and Donald Tambunan, Project Management Specialist for an update and discussion on USAID-funded project activities in Indonesia. The DG met with representatives from the United Nations Centre for Alleviation of Poverty through Sustainable Agriculture (UN-CAPSA), and the Indonesian Ministry of Agriculture in Jakarta and Bogor to explore opportunities for collaboration. At AVRDC project locations in Bali and East Java he visited farmers and partners to learn about the challenges they encounter in vegetable production, and at schools he encouraged students and teachers to consume balanced diets. The DG promoted vegetables as a gateway to prosperity and health during an appearance on a talk show aired by Agropolitan TV in East Java. At East-West Seed Indonesia (EWINDO) headquarters in Purwakarta, Dr. Keatinge signed a letter of agreement with Dr. Glenn Pardede, Managing Director, establishing a plan for future distribution of vegetable seed kits in response to natural disasters in Indonesia. USAID, EWINDO and AVRDC have prepared 10,000 kits, each containing seed of five different vegetable crops, growing instructions, and tips for saving seed for future planting.