Those attending the ceremonies included U.S. Agriculture Deputy Secretary Jim Moseley and Under Secretary for Food Safety Dr. Elsa Murano.
The FSIA also will provide training programs concerning food safety.
"This institute is the first of its kind and seeks to provide a cooperative, educational oriented relationship with the nations in the Western Hemisphere," Moseley said.
Murano said the institute supports priorities established by Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman to spur the exchange of information and technology among countries around the world.
That was the centerpiece of ministerial level meetings on science and technology held in Sacramento, Calif., in June 2003, as well as follow up meetings in May 2004 in Costa Rica and Burkino Faso in June 2004.
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