Project FLOREO: THE RICHNESS OF RHODOPE HERBS AND THEIR SUSTAINABLE USE presented on an international conference in Trigrad Village

Sep 29, 2022

On September 8th 2022, Association ZDRAVETS held an international conference in the village of Trigrad. The conference was dedicated to the richness of Rhodope herbs and their sustainable use by business and the local community.

The conference was implemented in the frame of the FLOREO project, funded by the Cooperation Programme INTERREG V-A Greece – Bulgaria 2014-2020. It was attended by a total of 71 people, including representatives of the Bulgarian public administration - the municipalities of Devin and Smolyan, Smolyan Regional Government, represented by the Deputy Regional Governor Hristo Stanchev, Georgi Pamporov from the Regional Tourist Association Rhodopes, representatives of local associations and schools, representatives of the business community.

An esteemed key note speaker who took part in the conference was Associate Professor Kamen Petrov - Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Management and Administration at the University of National and World Economy – Sofia and author of numerous articles and research in the sphere of Administration and Management, Earth Sciences, Economics, Regional Development, Infrastructure Management, Regional Economics and Geo-economic Studies.

The conference followed the announced agenda, which was updated and published on the project website: .

A lecture on "The richness of herbs in the Rhodope Mountains and their sustainable use" was given by Yordan Yordanov, who is an assistant professor at the Department of Plant Breeding at the Agricultural University of Plovdiv. Yordan Yordanov is in charge of the Centre of Agroecology, which is the test site for organic farming at the Agricultural University and has over 20 years of experience in organic (bio) farming, with many ideas and experience from developing even his own herb farm. For the last three years he has been lecturing on organic farming at the National Agricultural Advisory Service, which supports start-up farmers in Bulgaria. He has been particularly asked a lot of questions by prospective young entrepreneurs who have decided to take part in the project training.

Dr Tanya Kiryakidu from the Greek partner presented interesting best practices and use cases related to the cooperation between VET schools and colleges and the business, as well as about the practical education with simulation cases.

After the panel discussions on the pre-announced agenda, the guests were invited to visit the nearby infrastructure built under the project.

The CLASSROOM required for the theoretical training of the future entrepreneurs was fully completed in June this year. For this purpose, a training room has been refurbished and equipped with all the necessary lap tops, multimedia projector, screen, TV, printer, scanner etc. In addition, the completed ECO LAB in the Rhodope Herb Alley was presented - an educational infrastructure for individual and group experiments and classes which was developed on a degraded area. More than 80 species of Rhodope herbs are located in the Park.

Two pavilions were particularly interesting for the conference participants - the larger of which will be a workshop for group activities and practical training of future entrepreneurs, as well as for demonstrations related to all kinds of herbal production-cosmetics, tea, juices, jams, etc. It is equipped not only with specially made herbaria that will be able to immerse visitors in the world of herbs even during the autumn-winter season, but also with already purchased machines for packing and grinding herbs.


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