Los Baños, Laguna—Some 25 nationals from eight Asian counties, both from public and private sectors, have converged at the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture to participate in this year’s Asian Short Course on Agribiotechnology.
According to Searca, the program aims to enable the participants from China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam to have a better understanding of the entire value chain of living modified organisms (LMOs) as well as national and international legal instruments regarding LMOs.
SEARCA has partnered in organizing the Asian Short Course on Agribiotechnology, Biotechnology Regulation, and Communication with the International Service for the Acquisition of Agribiotech Applications, Malaysian Biotechnology Information Center, and Monash University, also in Malaysia.
In organizing the program, Searca said it recognizes the importance of integrating research, effective communication, and science-based regulatory frameworks in harnessing the full potential of agribiotechnology to fuel sustainable agricultural development.
Now on its second year, Searca said the program also aims to discuss effective communication of agribiotechnology and biosafety regulation.
In his opening message, SEARCA Director and National Academician Glenn B. Gregorio highlighted SEARCA’s important role in advancing science-based innovations to address poverty and food security.
“We stand behind products of agribiotechnology that increase agricultural productivity to feed a growing population in the midst of dwindling natural resources and erratic changes in climate,” Dr. Gregorio said.
He said that due attention must be given to our resource-poor farmers by providing them access to information, best practices, and new technologies that give them a fighting chance to cope with the many challenges they face and to open up better opportunities for them and their families so that they can have better quality lives.
For her part, Dr. Mahaletchumy Arujanan, ISAAA Global Coordinator, said they organized this training program to bring their Asian stakeholders updated information and hands-on experience on agribiotechnology, exercises on food/feed safety assessment, and tips on strategic communication, and risk management and communication.