Claudia works at the Las Cardas Agricultural Experiment Station, University of Chile. This Station, located in Coquimbo, was created in 1979. She is an Administrator of the Experimental Station (since 2000), but that does not impede her from applying and participating in research and other projects.
The Las Cardas Agricultural Experiment Station comprises 5,400 hectares dedicated to three areas: fruit trees resistant to water deficit, natural resources, and goat production. The latter is her sole responsibility in terms of production management, cheese making, and product sales. Claudia participates in the other areas in a supportive capacity.
As general background, it is essential to note that the Coquimbo Region, located 500 km north of Santiago, is an arid area highly affected by desertification, hence the Station’s focus areas. Seventy percent of the national goat population is concentrated in this region (approximately 350,000 heads), divided among 5,391 producers, of which 80% are small producers affected by social vulnerability problems.
The Regional Government has identified the following gaps:
The projects executed at the Las Cardas Experimental Station seek to bridge these gaps through research and training directly related to the issues mentioned above. As a result, from the point of view of interaction with the region, the Station is a demonstration center where results of the research carried out are shared, and technologies and practices are transferred to farmers, agriculture professionals, and students through field days, courses, presentations, and on-farm consultancies. Apart from the specific extension activities of the projects in execution, Las Cardas Experimental Station has a strong working relationship with the Institute for Agricultural Development (INDAP) of the Ministry of Agriculture to improve regional goat production.
Finally, in terms of infrastructure, the Station has an analytic microbiology laboratory and a laboratory for proximal analyses of milk and cheese, also under Claudia’s responsibility.
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The International Goat Association promotes goat research and development for the benefit of humankind, to alleviate poverty, to promote prosperity and to improve the quality of life.