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FAO Regional Office for Africa

Technical Meeting to deliberate on Fall armyworm response in Southern Africa

 

WHO: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Subregional office for Southern Africa

WHAT: Technical Meeting to deliberate on Fall armyworm response in Southern Africa

WHEN: 25 April 2017 (8:30am)

WHERE: Aspire Hotel, Nairobi, Kenya

Background

The Fall armyworm; an invasive pest that was first reported in Southern Africa in December 2016 is a threat to food security and the livelihood of over 70 percent of the population in the region that depends on agriculture for a livelihood. Though the region is likely to post a better harvest than last season, due to good rains received, this  could prove precarious for vulnerable households given that Southern Africa is still recovering from the devastating El Niño drought that affected over 40 million people.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Subregional office for Southern Africa will convene a Technical Meeting that will discuss the Fall armyworm infestation in Southern Africa from 25 – 26 April 2017 in Nairobi, Kenya. The Meeting will bring together a cross section of stakeholders including government technical staff, development partners, researchers, experts, academia, farmers and the private sector.

It will discuss updated information on the pest and review its current status in the region. Participants will agree on a harmonized system of monitoring the pest and assessing its impact  in the region. They will also share country experiences and innovations on effective containment and management of the pest. The meeting will also review and adopt standard protocols that will be used at national level to carry out the assessments.  Furthermore, it will provide a framework for    monitoring and managing the fall armyworm at country and regional levels and  identify opportunities for collaboration among key institutions and stakeholders in identifying and conducting critical research  to sustainably manage the pest in the region.

This Meeting follows the three – day Emergency Regional Meeting that was convened from 14 – 16 February 2017 by FAO, in collaboration with the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) and the International Red Locust Control Organization for Central and Southern Africa (IRLCO-CSA) in Harare, Zimbabwe. The meeting, the first in efforts to pursue a coordinated response to the Fall armyworm infestation in Southern Africa presented an opportunity for countries to share information, experiences and lessons on the Fall armyworm infestation, assessed the national and regional preparedness and capacity to respond and identified gaps that needed to be addressed. Countries developed action plan response strategies.

Africa Status and Strategy Meeting on the Fall armyworm

The outcomes of the Southern Africa Technical Meeting will be presented and further deliberated at the “Stakeholders Consultation Meeting on Fall Armyworm in Africa; Status and Strategy for Effective Management;” that FAO is jointly organizing with Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) and International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) also in Nairobi Kenya from 27-28 April 2017.

The meeting will review the status of fall armyworm incidence and impact in Africa, discuss the available technological options for minimizing the damage caused by the pest and provide concrete recommendations on the strategy for effective management of fall armyworm in Africa. The meeting will also identify appropriate partnerships to develop and deploy short, medium and long term solutions to the farming communities in Africa.