A second annual fruit-and-berry Festival, Karagat Fest, took place last Saturday, Aug. 9, in the village of Kyzyl-Suu, Jety-Oguz district Issyk-Kul province. A festival devised to promote natural products of Issyk-Kul is organized by AVEP Public Foundation under the KGC-sponsored program, Karagat Plus.
Attending the Festival were Emil Kaptagayev, the Government’s Envoy to Issyk-Kul province; Jumabek Asylbekov, chief of Food Supply Security and Agrimarketing of the Ministry of Agriculture and Melioration; Douglas Grier, Kumtor Gold Company Director for Sustainable Development, representatives of the general public and news media workers. This year’s festival had a total of 2,000 visitors.
The Festival’s main purpose is to boost fruit-and-berry production across the region and provide a forum for building partnerships among the farmers, goods processors and consumers.
The event was organized by 500 farmers who offered their produce to Festival participants and visitors. Under the Festival rules, any person might not only taste fruit and berries but also participate in various master classes teaching jam-and-juice production out of environmentally sound products. Farmers could learn more about the advanced technologies employed under the Karagat Plus Program to effectively produce, process and store fruit-and-berry goods. Any person was welcome to consult Karagat Plus experts on innovative irrigation practices, effective berry growing technologies, drip irrigation methods as well as on the development of nurseries and building of greenhouses. The Festival closed with a concert given by Kyrgyz pop stars, and a festive fireworks.
The third annual Festival, Karagat Fest, is supposed to be organized next year by Tiup district. Last year’s Festival, it will be recalled, took place in the village of Bokonbayevo, Ton district.