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Zamorano graduate and researcher promotes agriculture in three continents

Zamorano’s slogan, “labor omnia vincit”, work conquers all, made a substantial impact  and was the key that propelled her to reach her goals and professional development, she says.

Inspired by her father Roberto Fromm (class of 1966), graduate Ingrid Fromm (1999) knew from a young age that she wanted to study at Zamorano. She currently stands out as a researcher at the University of Bern of Applied Sciences, in Switzerland, where she works for the Department of International Agriculture as a specialist in value chains in countries of West Africa, Asia and Latin America.

She was convinced after her first visit to Zamorano’s campus in 1991  for the first time in 1992 to study agronomy, a major that lasted only through 1997. After, she followed with the Agronomist Engineer Program, graduating in 1999.

With the tools to face any challenge, Fromm decided to continue her Master’s studies in Promotion of Small and Medium Enterprises, and then the PhD in Development Economics  and became the first Honduran Magna Cum Laude. at the University of Leipzig, Germany.

From scientific academic contribution

“I have not lost the Zamorano discipline, I keep getting up every day before 6 am with an attitude of gratitude for the opportunity to serve, realize my dreams, and at the same time wanting to work, to give the world the best of me,” she says.

Her experience centering around agricultural research for development, from a socioeconomic and environmental perspective, complements her teaching classes at a European university where she also advises students on thesis research.

At Bern, she researches the integration of agricultural producers in global value chains and their alternatives so that they can be inserted into them, improving their revenue and simultaneously producing a more sustainable process. In recent years she has focused on commodity chains such as cocoa, coffee, bananas, fresh vegetables and African palm originating in  West Africa, Asia and Latin America.

For the past 5 years she has been leading a research project in India that receives Switzerland’s biotechnology support for research focused on improvement of legumes such as pigeon pea (Cajanus cajan). There she carries out research on the adoption of improved varieties between farmers and consumers.

However, her work has transitioned from scientific to academic through her work with six agricultural universities in Nigeria, supporting capacity building projects such as curriculum improvement, so that they can offer practical teaching on the subject of chains. of value in agriculture.

International recognition

Her work has been published in over  20 scientific journals (peer reviewed). In addition, she has written two book chapters on the topic of cocoa value chains. Additionally, she has been invited to give talks to present her research publicly in conferences, workshops and scientific events in more than 20 countries in Europe, Asia, Africa, North and South America.

Fromm says she is proud to be part of the scientific community working in agricultural research for development. And even more, being a Zamorano woman contributing a grain of sand in the search for solutions to feed a growing world population. However, she assures that although research is an important part of her work, educating and training young people who in the future will take “the baton and will continue looking for solutions to achieve this great goal, is my biggest contribution”.

She is currently a founding member of the Honduras Global Initiative, created in 2011, which aims to identify and connect highly qualified Hondurans worldwide to promote the transfer of knowledge and encourage innovation, scientific, technological and business development in the country.

Women’s empowerment in agriculture

She has worked with women from various regions of the world, especially India, on research projects related to the adoption at the farmer and consumer level of improved varieties of legumes.

“Much of agricultural work, the cultivation and its management, is in their hands. It is important to involve women researchers because they capture perspectives that are relevant to research, ” she says.

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