2020 is launched as International Year of Plant Health
The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) announced 2020 as the “International Year of Plant Health” (IYPH).
By 2020, the aim is to raise global consciousness on how protecting plant health can help end hunger, decrease poverty, protect the environment, and enhance economic development.
Reminding that plants provide 80 percent of the food we eat, and produce 98 percent of the oxygen we breathe, Prof. Dr. Nail Öztaş said: “Plants are under constant and increasing threat from insects and diseases. Around 40 percent of global food products are lost from plant pests and diseases every year. This leads to more than $220 billion in agricultural trade losses per year. It causes millions of people to face hunger and damages agriculture, the primary source of income for poor rural communities.”
Emphasizing the need to develop policies and actions to improve plant health in order to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, Istanbul Gelisim University Vice Rector Prof. Dr. Nail Öztaş said: “FAO and the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) will conduct activities to make the year a success as well as promote plant health. This is our duty.”
The main objectives of FAO for 2020 are:
“Raise awareness of the importance of healthy plants to achieve the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, stressing the impact of plant health on food security and ecosystem functions, sharing best practices to keep plants healthy while protecting the environment.”
Stating that keeping plants or plant products free of pests and diseases will also facilitate trade, Öztaş explained: “These efforts will provide market access and strengthen compliance with phytosanitary regulations and standards, especially for developing countries.”
Edited date: 03.01.2020