Ensuring seed and plant health

October 17, 2012 at 4:54 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Researchers from seven countries acquired new skills
in seed and plant health monitoring

A training workshop on seed and plant health, held in Dubai, 23-26 September, brought together 18 participants, including eight women, from seven countries  ̶ Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Yemen. The workshop helped build capacity to manage national seed health units in each country, using international standards and protocols. It was part of the Arabian Peninsula regional project supported by the Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development and IFAD.

Training modules covered various aspects: management of plant/seed health units, testing methods, mycology, phytosanitary measures, and some of the more important diseases of cereal and vegetables crops, ornamental plants and fruit trees. Particular emphasis was placed on maintaining seed health in incoming and outgoing seed samples, in seed production and in genebanks. Senior officials from the UAE’s Minister of Environment and Water – H.E. Dr Mariam Al Shenasi, Asst. Undersecretary, Technical Affairs, and Mr Hamad Al Mehyas, Director of Laboratories – attended the closing session, reflecting the importance of this training to the national research program.

The course was led by Dr Siham Asaad, Head of ICARDA’s Seed Health Unit. Following the course, participants were asked for detailed feedback on content, presentation, interaction and other aspects. Upwards of 90% rated the course very good or excellent on each parameter.

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