Welcoming the YPARD Turkey Country representative: Seher Gümüş

09 Jan 2017 by Stacy Hammond

portrait of Seher GumusWe are delighted to welcome the new YPARD Turkey Country representative Seher Gümüş

Seher is a graduate of the Hacettepe University, Ankara / Turkey with a bachelors degree in food engineering. During her studies, she worked as a research assistan at the food engineering department.Currently, she is a self-employed project writer and manager in central Turkey, where she works with small scale local farmers in her home town, helping them receive funding from governmental sources in order to improve their production capacity and facilities.

Additionally, she also works with local farmers to devise better ways of building more sustainable food supply chains between small producers and consumers as she is more interested in reducing the gaps of small farmers’ access to the market. Her main focus is to support and develop the local economy. 

In 2012, she was awarded with an Erasmus Mundus scholarship to study a double degree master program, called “AgrisMundus” whose main focus was on Sustainable Development in Agriculture. In her first year of study at the University College Cork (UCC) in Ireland, the program focused on “Cooperative Organisations, Food Marketing and Rural Development”. Upon completing her first year of studies, she then moved to Montpellier, France for her second year, where she studied “Resources, Agricultural Systems and Development” in Montpellier SupAgro. During her study period in France,Seher went to the Cordillera Region in the Philippines to do a 3 months field research where she worked in corporation with the IRRI (International Rice Research Institute) under the “Heirloom Rice Project”.

The focus of the research was to analyze the socio-economic, cultural and environmental aspects of planting heirloom rice varieties and investigate the existing and potential value chains supplying heirloom rice to local, domestic and international markets. After the field research she returned to France to defend her Master thesis on January, 2015 in "Montpellier SupAgro" which was based on the research she carried out in the Philippines through the project and  thereafter obtained her second degree. 

During and after her masters study on sustainable development, she had chance to meet several farmers from different cultures (Irish, Italian, French, Moroccan, Filipino, Turkish) and witnessed that all these farmers had a common vision of being more sustainable in terms of the social, economic and environmental aspects of agriculture. Seher expresses that meeting these farmers sparked her enthusiasm and inspired her to work with small producers in her country. 

She had this to say on the account of joining YPARD;

"Learning about YPARD and seeing the impact it can make I believe that it is a very useful and beneficial global platform that can promote agriculture among young people. I believe that becoming the YPARD Turkey country representative and through YPARD I will help to inspire the young agricultural community of my country to have new and innovative ideas about agriculture/agribusiness and agricultural development."

We couldn't agree more and we look forward to hearing more on Youth-in-Agriculture activities from Turkey under the leadership of Seher.

We also take this opportunity to thank Eren Taskin the outgoing YPARD Turkey representative and look forward to our continued interaction with him.

If you are from or based in Turkey, and want to get involved in YPARD Turkey activities, please contact Seher at ypardturkey@gmail.com,

Welcome on board Seher!