Madrid, Spain, 23 November 2023, IOC Headquarters
On the occasion of World Olive Day, the International Olive Council (IOC) and the International Center for Advanced Agronomic Studies (CIHEAM) organised an event to recall the essential role of women in the olive sector in Madrid on 23 November 2023.
Led by the renowned olive oil taster Ms Emmanuelle Dechelette, the meeting brought together the Minister of Agriculture of Tunisia Mr Abdel Moneim Balaati, the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Agriculture of Spain Mr Ernesto Abati, Mrs Raghed Basem Antone Al Saqqa, Ambassador of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in Spain, the Executive Director of the IOC Mr Abdellatif Ghedira, the President and Secretary General of the CIHEAM, Mrs Frida Krifca and Mr Teodoro Miano, the Secretary General of the Union for the Mediterranean (Video) Mr Nasser Kamel, as well as delegations from producing countries and international women’s networks.
The event was an opportunity to highlight women involved in the olive-growing sector, to sign and launch a Manifesto “For better Knowledge and Recognition of the Role of Women in the Olive World”.
CLIMATE-AGRICULTURE-GENDER: A PRIORITY FOR CIHEAM
During her opening speech, Mrs Frida Krifca, President of the CIHEAM, stressed the importance of the empowerment of women and the integration of a gender perspective not only because Mediterranean countries are a global hotspot for climate change and water scarcity, which weighs on agriculture and food security, but also because most of these countries have a high concentration of women in the agricultural workforce.
She stated that climate change, water scarcity, the degradation of natural resources, and also food and economic crises, do not affect women and men in the same way in rural and agricultural areas, especially due to certain social and legal norms which create inequalities in access to water or land ownership, financing and credit, training or even access to decision-making processes. In this regard, she noted the necessity to strengthen support for women in agri-food systems.
WOMEN TESTIMONIALS AND SIGNATURE OF THE MANIFESTO
In addition to the screening of videos and field testimonies, a Manifesto drafted by Olio Nuovo Day, Women in Olive Oil, the Arab Women Olive Oil Network, the Jordan Women Olive Oil Network, Women & Olives Latin America Network, Pandolea Association and the Associazione Nazionale Donne dell’Olio, with the support of the CIHEAM and the IOC, was signed at the end of the celebration.
Entitled, “For Better Knowledge and Recognition of the Role of Women in the Olive world”, the Manifesto highlights the wide range of professions (research, training, production, processing, marketing, etc.) in the sector as well as the impact of their participation in economic, financial and social terms. The Manifesto draws attention to the progress that still needs to be made to better advocate for this participation and for these professions to become a true source of empowerment and fulfilment for all women. Recommendations for stakeholders complete this manifesto.