Norofert, the largest Romanian producer of organic inputs for agriculture, announces a strategic alliance with the Bucharest University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine (USAMV Bucharest).
According to a press release issued by the Norofert Group, through this partnership, Norofert and USAMV will bring science into the economy by jointly developing innovative products and services, to be sold on both the European single market and the global markets.
The partnership is focused on two axes – applied research and internationalization. The collaboration entails that USAMV researchers will develop with Norofert new products that meet the needs of organic agriculture, that will be then marketed and sold on all markets of Norofert’s activity, including in the United States. In April 2020, Norofert has successfully established a subsidiary in the state of Ohio in the US, Norofert USA, LLC.
“The cooperation with Norofert honors us, and the ambitious goals we have set ourselves can make our partnership an example of good practice and efficiency at a European as well as international level. Together we can demonstrate the power of synergies that occur when universities and companies join forces and add value to the range of innovative products offered on the international market. We can accomplish this by implementing the most appropriate scientific solutions for successful agriculture as well as by contributing to the quality preparation of a new generation of specialists, managers and entrepreneurs. We are developing a partnership between two Romanian institutions that aim to contribute to the revolution of agriculture at European and global level. We will thus respond to the challenges of the next 10 years, overlapping with the objectives of the European Green Pact”, said Sorin-Mihai Cîmpeanu, Rector at USAMV Bucharest.
“We are proud that Norofert is partnering up with USAMV, thus building a bridge between the local research community and business environment. As our expansion on foreign markets, particularly in the United States, advances, we are happy to be contributing to the building of an image that Romania has an immense research potential, especially in the agriculture field. As we continuously expand the range of Norofert products, the work of researchers from USAMV will be essential in the process of developing the new formulas that will best address the modern-day challenges of modern agriculture. We thank USAMV for their trust, and we look forward to a fruitful collaboration”, said Vlad Popescu, CEO of Norofert SA.
Norofert raised in the last 12 months approximately 19 million lei from Bucharest Stock Exchange investors, capital which has been partially directed to the expansion in the United States. The agriculture industry is one of the largest sectors in America, and there are an estimated 2 million operational farms in America today. Following receiving authorization in the state of Ohio, Norofert expects to sell the first products in the US during this autumn’s campaign, subject to prior field tests of these products, specially formulated for the American market.
Additionally, Norofert and USAMV also want to contribute to strengthening the practical capabilities of the future generations by educating and training students, to equip them with the required skills for the challenges of the present labor market. The focus will be placed on the agriculture of the future and the promotion of innovation and digitalization within the sector. USAMV Bucharest students follow specialized study programs on organic agriculture, an important area, which has a direct impact on issues that society is currently facing, such as environment and climate change as well as human health.
On May 20th, 2020 European Commission published “Farm to Fork Strategy” which entails a move towards a more healthy and sustainable EU food system. Among other goals, the strategy aims to reduce by 50% the use of chemical pesticides by 2030 and to reduce the excess of nutrients and to boost the development of EU organic farming area to achieve 25% of entire farmland under organic farming by 2030. As of 2018, Romania had just 2,4% share of organic farming in total land used in agriculture – the lowest in the EU. On the opposite side is Austria, with 24,1% of the land being farmed organically, Estonia with 20,6% and Sweden with 20,3%.
The total budget dedicated to agriculture for the next programming period 2021-2027 has a considerable increase, with an additional 15 billion euros allocated through the “Next Generation EU” recovery plan, which was proposed on May 27th, 2020. Moreover, 10 billion euro are available under Horizon Europe for investments in research and innovation related to food, bio-economy, natural resources and agriculture, with knowledge transfer seen as an essential part of the scheme.