During the Kyiv Jewish Forum 2020, the Honorary Consul of Israel in the Western Region of Ukraine Oleg Vyshniakov stated at the panel “What can Ukraine learn from Israel?” that Ukraine had a lot to learn from Israel in many areas, in particular in agriculture.
“Israel is not very lucky with geography, 50% of the territory is occupied by deserts; and in this situation, with a harsh climate and lack of water, the Israelis have made an oasis out of the desert. The area of agricultural lands in Israel makes 240 thousand hectares. This is significantly less than that of any large agricultural holding in Ukraine. At the same time, about 4% of the workforce in the country is engaged in this industry and they feed all of Israel,” Vyshniakov said.
According to him, the Israeli agriculture is considered one of the most efficient in the world thanks to innovations. In particular, instead of using conventional fertilizers, or when it comes to weed control, Israel uses predatory insects instead of pesticides. Therefore, Israel has very eco-friendly products. Today, one farmer in Israel produces food for more than a hundred residents, with 76% of Israel’s agricultural products being exported to the EU.
“You can see quality Israeli products almost everywhere in Europe. In Israel, hybrids of vegetables and fruits are grown, enhancing their taste, or making it neutral. The state subsidizes about 40% of the purchase price and cost of implementation of new technologies, programs of innovative harvesting techniques, and so on. This is a vivid example of development, it can be very useful for Ukraine,” the consul said.
He thinks that Ukraine will be also developing and, over time, will also become a great country, with a serious prestige in the world market: “Then the situation will be a little different, and we might be discussing what Israel can learn from Ukraine.”
As a reminder, Kyiv Jewish Forum 2020 was held online on September 8-9. The organizers are the Jewish Confederation of Ukraine and the Jerusalem Post. The first Kyiv Jewish Forum was held in Kyiv last year and brought together over 500 participants from around the world.
As the President of the Jewish Confederation of Ukraine Boris Lozhkin stated at the opening of the Kyiv Jewish Forum 2020, “in the past few years, we have witnessed a real revival of the Jewish life in Ukraine.”
“The Jewish Confederation of Ukraine seeks to contribute to the development of the global Jewish community, and that is why we organize the Kyiv Jewish Forum – a global platform to discuss the opportunities and challenges faced by the Jewry around the world, as well as to search effective solutions,” he added.