1st International Agrobiodiversity Congress 2016
Agrobiodiversity includes all components of biological diversity relevant to food and agriculture: the varieties, breeds and populations of useful plant, animal, and fish species and the diversity of insects, microbes and other species that are part of production systems. Human-mediated co-existence in diverse agro-ecosystems around the world has shaped, and sustained the unique structures, processes, functions and their economic value. With the advancement of societies and nations, the available food and nutrition basket has expanded globally due to exchange and effective use of available agrobiodiversity. Considerable loss of genetic diversity has occurred over the last few decades, demanding urgent action to research and conserve available genetic resources for posterity. In the process, National Agricultural Research Systems (NARS), International Research Centers under the Consultative Group of International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) and the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) have made significant efforts for conservation but it continues to remain a major challenge. Currently about 800 million people suffer from insecure food supplies and malnutrition globally. Although, the Green Revolution, led to considerable reduction in the poor and undernourished people, yet hidden hunger persists and affects over two billion people worldwide. Recently, the United Nations has renewed commitment to push the sustainable development agenda, in which food, nutrition and environmental security figures as the key sustainable development goals (SDGs).
Capacity building, trained human resource and partnerships, to research and adopt new technological options is imminently required for meeting the future demand of new varieties and breeds in agriculture through fast track germplasm use. Increased and targeted use of genetic resources is needed to cope with changed production environments, stress, etc., in climate change situations. Increased diversity in agriculture production systems, including their sustainable intensification will buffer capacity to cope with increased environmental instability. Efficient and sustainable agrobiodiversity management also requires functional convergence of global policy and regulatory frameworks [United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA), Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA), Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing (NP-ABS), Aichi Targets 2011-2020; Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), World Trade Organization (WTO), etc.] shaping biodiversity, food and agriculture, climate change and trade related mechanisms.
The above agrobiodiversity-centric issues would be addressed through in-depth deliberations involving researchers, intellectuals, regulators, policy makers, farmers, NGOs, donors, philanthropists, and other stakeholders on a common platform in the Congress. A system-wide approach is proposed for the deliberations which may reflect both in situ and ex situ conservation, use and sustainability of agrobiodiversity, including plants (crops, horticulture, agroforestry), animals, fish, insects, microbes, etc.
Organizers and Sponsors
The Congress has been jointly conceived and being organized by:
- Indian Society of Plant Genetic Resources (ISPGR)
- Bioversity International,
- Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR)
- Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Right Authority (PPV&FRA)
- National Biodiversity Authority (NBA)
- Trust for Advancement of Agricultural Sciences (TAAS)
- National Academy of Agricultural Sciences (NAAS)
- M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF)
- Indian Society of Genetics and Plant Breeding (ISGPB)
Co-sponsors of the Congress include many partners such as:
- International Maize and Wheat Improvement Centre (CIMMYT),
- International Centre for Research in Semi-arid Tropics (ICRISAT)
- International Centre for Research in Dryland Areas (ICARDA)
- Global Crop Diversity Trust (GCDT)
- Japan International Research Centre for Agricultural Sciences (JIRCAS)
- Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International (CABI)
- German Corporation for International Cooperation (GIZ)
- Asia Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutes (APAARI)
- Provide a common platform to share experience and knowledge on the sustainable conservation and use of agrobiodiversity.
- Critically evaluate the current research and systems of management and use of agrobiodiversity and to assess the preparedness for meeting short- and long-term requirements of humanity.
- Identify and prioritize research areas that require greater inputs and thrusts for better management of agrobiodiversity.
- Strengthen capacity and build new partnerships to help manage agrobiodiversity worldwide.
- Agrobiodiversity for Food, Nutrition and Ecosystem Services
- Agrobiodiversity for Adaptation and Mitigation of Climate Change
- Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs), Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) and Farmers' Rights
- Quarantine, Biosafety and Biosecuirty Issues
- Conservation Strategies and Methodologies
- Science-led Innovation for Agrobiodiversity Management and Sustainable Use
- Capacity Building and Strengthening Partnerships
- New thinking on the sustainable management and use of agrobiodiversity through interdisciplinary exchange of ideas and opinions among various stakeholders.
- A roadmap to enhance food, nutrition and health security by optimal utilization of agrobiodiversity while protecting agro-ecosystems and landscapes.
- Mainstreaming agrobiodiversity related issues into global discussions to ensure fair access, benefit sharing and sustainable use.
- Developing a network of partnerships to strengthen agrobiodiversity management systems at the national, regional and global level.
- Develop a 'Delhi Declaration on Agrobiodiversity Management' as a vision document to execute the above-mentioned action plan.
Agrobiodiversity, Agriculture, Food, Nutition, Environment Security