IPPC Regional Workshop for the Caribbean to focus on standards for plant health and pest prevention

Posted on Wed, 04 Sep 2019, 12:01

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Checking for symptoms of Fusarium wilt (Fusarium oxysporum ) – a disease which has caused heavy losses to banana production in several Asian and African countries and is now present in South America. The Caribbean workshop will provide an opportunity for regional plant health professionals to develop plans to address this threat. © FAO

2 September 2019 (St Phillip, Antigua) – Official contact points of the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) and agricultural experts from 14 Caribbean countries will meet for a regional workshop in St Phillip, Antigua from 10 to 12 September 2019. During the session, participants will prepare regional positions on international standards, build phytosanitary capacity for the prevention of entry and establishment of exotic and invasive plant pests; and share best practices in plant health.

The workshop will also provide an opportunity to discuss regional plans for the International Year of Plant Health (IYPH) in 2020. The IYPH seeks to raise global awareness on how protecting plant health can help end hunger, reduce poverty, protect the environment, and boost economic development.

Of importance this year is the inclusion of a technical seminar on the fungal disease, Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense tropical race 4 (TR4). This disease has caused heavy losses to banana production in several Asian and African countries and is now present in South America. This special technical session will provide an opportunity for Caribbean plant health professionals to develop plans to address the threat of this devastating disease that can threaten the agricultural sector of many countries in the region.

These annual regional workshops are very important for the Caribbean as they allow IPPC contracting parties in the region to fully participate in the standard setting process,” said Juliet Goldsmith, Plant Health Specialist at the Caribbean Agricultural Health and Food Safety Agency (CAHFSA) headquartered in Suriname. In addition, she welcomed the attention that is being given to the TR4 on bananas as this disease can have an impact on food and nutrition security goals and the economies of the region.

The workshop is jointly organized by CAHFSA, the Regional plant protection organization (RPPO) for the Caribbean; the IPPC Secretariat, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Sub-regional Office for the Caribbean, the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), and the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Barbuda Affairs of Antigua and Barbuda.

The workshop in Antigua will be one of seven annual IPPC regional workshops hosted around the world in 2019.

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