Baku hosts “Towards Green World” plant health forum (PHOTO)

Green Economy Materials 21 May 2024 11:18 (UTC +04:00)
Baku hosts “Towards Green World” plant health forum (PHOTO)
Humay Aghajanova
Humay Aghajanova
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BAKU, Azerbaijan, May 21. In line with the President of Azerbaijan's decree declaring 2024 as the “Green World Solidarity Year” and marking the International Day of Plant Health, the Plant Health Forum titled “Towards a Green World” has kicked off in Baku, Trend reports.

The event, organized jointly by the Food Safety Agency of Azerbaijan (FSA) and the Ministry of Agriculture of Azerbaijan, is attended by representatives of a number of government agencies, foreign countries, international organizations, and experts.

The forum, scheduled to take place on May 21–22, aims to create a platform for collaboration on protecting plants and plant products from pests, promoting plant health through pest control, and expanding production. It also seeks to ensure the safe trade of plants and plant products, enhance global food security, and conserve biodiversity. Participants will include national plant health institutions, regional and international organizations, government agencies, and experts.

Speaking at the event, Goshgar Tahmazli, chairman of the Food Security Agency of Azerbaijan, stated that the agency is implementing extensive measures to protect Azerbaijan from new dangerous plant diseases.

"The Agency has expanded phytosanitary measures on the import of agricultural planting materials, such as tomatoes, peppers, and potatoes, to shield the country from viral and bacterial plant diseases spreading in neighboring regions and to safeguard the production and export of crop products. In 2023, 829 notifications regarding quarantine pests found in imported plants and plant products were sent to exporting countries, with 49 pests detected in planting and sowing materials.

As part of phytosanitary control measures, the agency imposed temporary bans on imports from several importers due to detected non-compliance. Additionally, the agency developed and implemented the National Monitoring Plan to systematize observations and monitoring on primary production farms of major export-potential crops, including tomatoes, potatoes, onions, pomegranates, strawberries, and grapes. Under this plan, 1,380 crop farms were monitored in 2023. Laboratory tests revealed 176 quarantine pests in 172 farms, and necessary measures were taken," he said.

The chairman also highlighted the agency's significant efforts to improve the legal framework in the field of plant health.

Representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources, the Milli Majlis Committee on Agrarian Policy, the State Customs Committee of Azerbaijan, the Partnership and Coordination Office of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in Azerbaijan, and the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Supervision of Russia (Rosselkhoznadzor) also addressed the forum.

The speakers discussed the agrarian reforms in Azerbaijan, the progress in crop production, and the achievements in this field. They praised the efforts of the relevant agencies to enhance the plant health system in Azerbaijan, addressing modern challenges. They expressed confidence that this forum would further contribute to ensuring plant health and food security both in Azerbaijan and the broader region.

The event continued with sessions on "The Role of Sustainable Agricultural Practices in Pest Management Under Climate Change: In the Context of COP29" and "Research and Human Resource Capacity in Plant Health."

During these sessions, participants engaged in discussions and answered questions. Additionally, a Panel of Phytosanitary Experts was established.

Tomorrow, the forum will host sessions on "Pest Management Practices in Fruit Production Plots," "Pest Management Practices in Greenhouses," "Pest Management Practices in Annual Crops Production Plots," and "Proper Use of Plant Protection Products and Application of Biological Control Methods."

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