Karen  Estefania LUCATERO MENDEZ, 25 years old – Mexico : Participating to development projects in Latin America with UNIDO

My name is Karen Lucatero, I am a former student of the Master Food Identity (MFI) cohort 7, 2017 and I was accepted to perform a six-month internship at the headquarters of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (Vienna, Austria) right after my graduation from the Master. Due to my educational and professional background I was assigned to the Standards and Quality Infrastructure Division that belongs to the Department of Trade, Investment and Innovation. The mission of this Department is to support developing countries in the establishment of linkages between local producers and the national, regional and global markets through capacity-building in quality, environmental, sustainable and social accountability requirements in accordance with international and private standards.

In the last months I have been exposed to the day-to-day operations of the department; specifically I have been responsible for the formulation of two project proposals for two different countries in Latin America that were submitted to a potential donor (Cooperation Agency in a Developed Country) for their review and possible financing, I have revised several documents written by international and national consultants regarding the procedure towards obtaining a Geographical Indication (GI) for a specific local product and I have given advice to further proceed and achieve the objective, I also held meetings and workshops with a high-level delegation from a Latin-American country in which they kindly requested the support of UNIDO towards the accomplishment of food sovereignty for the internal market and increased access to the external markets. I have participated in different stages of the current projects UNIDO has in Latin America, including countries like Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Paraguay and Venezuela.

 (picture at UNIDO, United Nations Industrial Development Organization)