As a leading country in innovation and sustainability processes, Costa Rica directs its attention towards the specialization and modernization of traditional agriculture and fishing with a clear objective: to achieve a dynamic and inclusive economy.
For this, it becomes essential the use of innovative and sustainable technologies and the increase in productivity and competitiveness of the agricultural and fishing sector. Their work ultimately generates employment and wealth to the territories.
With that vision, the “Descubre” (Discover) program was launched. Since 2019, it has been committed to increase the productivity of agriculture and fishing through a constant process of discovering products, services and markets.
This path offers agricultural and fishing activities -mainly in rural and coastal areas of the country- the possibility of identifying new products and markets for export, and generating investment and development opportunities.
Almost three years after its launch, the program continues with its mission of contributing to the generation of employment and the development of both sectors, which are among the most affected by the health crisis, according to the report of the Performance of the Agricultural, Fishing and Rural Sector 2020.
The initiative is coordinated by the Ministry of Foreign Trade (Comex), the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG) and the Costa Rican Foreign Trade Promoter (Procomer).
Innovate in a sustainable way
The “Descubre” program aims to increase the added value of national production by migrating to activities that require greater skills and knowledge that have innovation and sustainability as part of its essence”, said Comex Minister, Andrés Valenciano.
In 2019, those involved identified ten products with competitive advantage in the international market: abaca (vegetable fiber), mariculture (cultivation of marine animals), beef, hemp, turmeric, papaya, fine and aroma cocoa, orange sweet potato, cassava by-products and insects.
This potential made it possible for “Descubre” to provide non-reimbursable funds in 2021 to 31 small and medium-sized companies that export abaca, sweet potato, and cassava by-products, to develop their product, improve their productivity and achieve export chains.
At the same time, the program actors have worked to attract international cooperation funds to facilitate the traceability of beef, the qualification of the cricket and mealworm as ornamental exotic species, and the creation of a committee to promote the production of the mariculture at the commercial level.
Through “Descubre” we set ourselves greater innovation and more productivity in the agricultural sector, not only so that it continues to diversify and gain even more value in international markets, but because we know that its evolution is capable of boosting growth and development in rural areas”, explained Procomer General Manager, Pedro Beirute Prada.
Find updates on upcoming events and details about activities related to “Descubre” at www.descubre.cr