The workshop “Innovation and Networking of Sugarcane Research for Future Sugarcane Industry in the Asian and Pacific Region” co-hosted by JIRCAS and the Food and Fertilizer Technology Center for Asia and the Pacific (FFTC), with the support of Kasetsart University, was held online on September 15, 2022.
More than 200 people from 21 countries and regions pre-registered for this workshop, and about 130 people participated online on the day of the workshop. Particularly large numbers of participants came from Japan, Thailand, and the Philippines. The program is available at https://www.jircas.go.jp/en/workshop/2022/e20220915. Workshop materials will also be posted on the FFTC website.
The workshop aimed to identify specific problems and requirements in sugarcane production in the Asia-Pacific region, to introduce advances in sugarcane breeding using interspecific and intergeneric hybrids and new technologies for utilization of sugar mill by-products, and to discuss breeding directions for the future sugarcane industry and networking in sugarcane research. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the direction of breeding for the future sugarcane industry and the formation of a sugarcane research network.
At the beginning of the meeting, Pres. KOYAMA Osamu of JIRCAS gave the opening remarks, followed by the welcome remarks from Dr. Su-San Chang, Director of FFTC, and Dr. Sutkhet Nakasathien, Vice President of Kasetsart University, Thailand. Then, Mr. ANDO Shotaro, Representative of JIRCAS Southeast Asia Liaison Office in Bangkok, explained the objectives of the workshop. The workshop consisted of three parts, with presentations and a question-and-answer session.
In the first session, Mr. UMEDA Makoto (Researcher, National Agriculture and Food Research Organization), Dr. TERAJIMA Yoshifumi (Senior Researcher of JIRCAS) and Dr. George Piperidis (Sugar Research Australia) introduced sugarcane breeding using interspecific and intergeneric hybrids, which are effective for expanding the narrow genetic base of current sugarcane varieties and developing varieties that suit diverse purposes.
In the second session, Mr. Amit Raj Singh (Sugarcane Research Institute of Fiji), Mr. Risvan Kuswurjanto (Indonesian Sugar Research Institute), Mr. Rimmon T. Armones (Sugar Regulatory Administration, Philippines), Dr. Jian-Cheng Chang (Taiwan Sugar Research Institute), Ms. Nattapat Khumla (Department of Agriculture, Thailand) and Dr. Cao Anh Duong (Director of the Sugarcane Research Institute, Vietnam), reported on the current status and specific issues of sugarcane research and the sugarcane industry in the Asia-Pacific region.
In the third session, Associate Prof. Wirat Vanichsriratana of Kasetsart University and Associate Prof. OHARA Satoshi of the University of Tokyo gave presentations on sugarcane biorefinery and by-product utilization.
In the general discussion, future collaborations were discussed. Lastly, Dr. WATANABE Tomonari, Deputy Director of FFTC, gave the closing remarks. The workshop was well organized and provided insights and future perspectives on the wide utilization of sugarcane and breeding strategies, as well as the current situation of sugarcane production and its related industries.