Posted on Fri, 28 Sep 2018, 17:36
Local farmers in Haiti sorting Cajanus Cajan beans. Participants from 14 Caribbean countries discussed ways to improve plant health and limit the risk of pests and diseases at the regional workshop. © FAO/Giuseppe Bizzarri
19 September 2018, Port of Spain, Trinidad - Protecting plants and the environment from invasive pests and diseases were some of the important issues discussed at the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) Regional Workshop held in Port of Spain, Trinidad from 17 to 19 September 2018.
Twenty-five participants from fourteen countries attended the workshop where they discussed draft International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures (ISPMs), and shared their experiences in developing phytosanitary capacity and highlighted existing gaps. Representatives from FAO, the IPPC secretariat, the Caribbean Agricultural Health and Food Safety Agency (CAHFSA), the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) and the United States Department of Agriculture s APHIS unit were also present.
Topics of special interest in the region were discussed such as:
The implementation of the standard for the international movement of seeds (ISPM 38) - in particular the challenges posed by consumers who order seeds online.
The interest in and availability of guides and training materials to support the implementation of the IPPC and its standards.
The implementation of the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) - with Trinidad and Tobago reporting that the delivery time for import permits had decreased from around 6 weeks to 3 to 5 days.
Ideas on activities to raise awareness about the International Year of Plant Heath (IYPH) such as launching a poetry competition and an exhibit about plants and pests; and a special session on the IYPH at the Caribbean Week of Agriculture in 2020.
The workshops are very important to the Caribbean Sub-region, particularly as most of our countries are unable to participate in the annual meetings the IPPC Governing Body (the Commission on Phytosanitary Measures (CPM)) due to limited funding. The workshops develop capacity and thereby facilitate the full participation of the IPPC contracting parties in the standard-setting process, said Vyjayanthi Lopez, Plant Production and Protection Officer at the FAO Sub-regional Office for the Caribbean in Barbados.
The workshop was organized by the IPPC Secretariat, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Sub-regional Office for the Caribbean, IICA, CAHFSA and the Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries of Trinidad and Tobago.
For more information, please see:
the Workshop report for the 2018 IPPC Regional Workshop for the Caribbean, available soon at this link.
Participants at the regional workshop. © Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture