From the perspective of contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the JIRCAS International Symposium 2019 focusing on international research collaboration to tackle transboundary plant pests was held at the Tsukuba International Congress Center on November 26, 2019.  

JIRCAS President Dr. Masa Iwanaga gave the opening remarks and mentioned that the symposium was part of agenda on transboundary plant pests at the G20 Meeting of Agricultural Chief Scientists (MACS) hosted by Japan this year. Then the Deputy Director General of the MAFF Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Research Council Secretariat gave the welcome address.

The keynote speeches were delivered by Dr. Jingyuan Xia, Secretary to the International Plant Protection Convention Secretariat (IPPC) and Dr. Ulrich Kuhlmann, Executive Director for Global Operations, CABI. Dr. Xia talked about recent challenges in fighting against transboundary plant pests and the FAO strategies for helping farmers in dealing with those pests. The keynote talk of Dr. Kuhlmann focused on CABI’s experiences of transboundary plant pest management particularly in strengthening plant health systems and the importance of advisory services.

In session 1 of the symposium, Dr. Akira Otuka (Institute of Agricultural Machinery, NARO) gave a talk on migration analysis and forecasting of migratory insect pests. Dr. Sachiyo Sanada-Morimura (Kyushu Okinawa Agricultural Research Center, NARO) and Dr. Mizuki Matsukawa (JIRCAS) gave a presentation about the development of insecticide application technology to rice planthoppers. Dr. Frédéric Baudron (International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center) talked about fall armyworm damage in African smallholder maize fields and its impact on yield.  

In session 2, the international collaborative network for rice blast was introduced by Dr. Yoshimichi Fukuta (JIRCAS). Then Dr. Claudia Godoy (Embrapa Soybean) talked about the Brazilian experiences on the invasion of soybean rust and its management. Lastly, Dr. Yukio Yokoi (WTO, International Affairs Department, MAFF) expanded on plant quarantine and risk management.  

The panel discussion was moderated by Dr. Masayasu Kato (JIRCAS) and Dr. Masaya Matsumura (NARO). The six speakers shared their opinions on effective international research cooperation, necessity of sharing information across countries, innovations in alerting, monitoring, diagnosis, and capacity building in developing regions, for coping with the problems of transboundary plant pests from the perspective of contributing to the SDGs. 

In the closing remarks, JIRCAS Vice-President Dr. Osamu Koyama emphasized that mitigation of transboundary plant pests should involve sharing information, establishing networks to promote researches, conducting research cooperation such as joint research projects, and strengthening collaboration with international organizations such as the IPPC, FAO, and CGIAR centers.  

The JIRCAS International Symposium 2019 was co-organized by the National Agriculture and Food Research Organization, in cooperation with the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), the Phytopathological Society of Japan, the Japanese Society of Applied Entomology & Zoology, FAO Liaison Office in Japan, and the Japan Forum on International Agricultural Research for Sustainable Development.

Opening address from JIRCAS President

Welcome remarks from the AFFRC Deputy Director General

Dr. Jingyuan Xia of the IPPC Secretariat

Dr. Ulrich Kuhlmann of CABI

Panel discussion

Group photo