RIKILT Wageningen UR will sign a memorandum of understanding with Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences (SBUMS) in Tehran, Iran, on 29 January 2016. Iran is interested in researching and improving the way food safety is monitored and within this context, a memorandum of understanding was drawn up.
Iran exports various products to the EU, including pistachios and saffron. Now that the boycott has been lifted, the country plans to strengthen its international trade partnerships. Before doing so, however, it must first meet the strict standards that apply to the EU and other major trade partners. The details of this partnership will be determined over the next few months. An initial training session was recently organised in Wageningen for SBUMS employees.
Years of experience
The institute for food safety RIKILT has extensive experience training laboratories that work for the national government. Training and capacity-building programmes have been developed for more than twenty-five countries. As a national and European reference laboratory and internationally-oriented research institute, RIKILT is an attractive partner for countries looking to redesign or improve their food safety assurance process.
Iran is also looking into partnership opportunities with other Wageningen UR components as well. At the request of the Iranian government, a plan is being drafted to improve agricultural production in Iran. Wageningen also plans to submit recommendations for setting up a water institute.
Western sanctions have made it difficult to enter into new partnerships with Iran in recent years. Nevertheless, Wageningen UR has always maintained a fruitful relationship with the Iranian government. Wageningen currently employs approximately thirty-five Iranian PhD candidates.