The project "MEDLENTISK: Partnership for an exchange of best practices on mastic tree fixed oil, an emblematic non-timber forest product in the Mediterranean", scheduled for 16 months, will begin on September 1st, 2020 and will end on December 31st, 2021. Involving 6 partners from 5 Mediterranean countries, this project is supported by the European programme Erasmus +.
43% of the EU surface is covered by forests and wooded areas. These surfaces constitute a set of fragile ecosystems that contribute to the fight against global warming. When managed sustainably, they are a major source of wealth and provide people with many services. Wood is the forest product that comes to mind spontaneously, but forests provide a whole variety of non-timber forest products (NTFPs), such as cork, resins, and edible products such as nuts, mushrooms and truffles.
Lentisk tree in the Calanques of Marseille
These NTFPs play an important role in improving the livelihoods of people living near forests who are involved in their harvesting, processing and trade.
The "MEDLENTISK" project wishes to promote the exchange of good practices around the Mediterranean on the little-known lentisk tree and its fixed oil. It is still produced in a traditional way, which influences the yield and quality of the extracted product. The composition and therapeutic virtues of this oil have also been little studied, even though this shrub is found throughout the Mediterranean area and seems to have significant qualities.
In order to do so, 6 partners from the South, East and North of the Mediterranean Sea have come together to improve interest and access to scientific and practical knowledge on lentisk tree’s fixed oil.
The partners will meet 3 times to increase their level of knowledge on mastic tree, to exchange good practices and challenges, and to discuss the problems and difficulties of this sector.
Best practices will be identified, their synthesis and translation will then be summarized in easy-to-understand formats for good dissemination to all stakeholders.
The results of the exchanges will be shared during a side event to be organised at a forthcoming international meeting on Mediterranean forests.
The project is implemented together by the AIFM, coordinator, with 5 partners, from 5 Mediterranean countries:
- University of Cagliari (Italia)
- Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Chania (Greece)
- National Institute for Research in Rural Engineering, Water and Forestry (Tunisia)
- Technical University of Bursa (Turkey)
- Provence Model Forest Association (France)