AGP - Updating the Global Plan of Action
 

The Second Global Plan of Action for Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture was adopted by the FAO Council in Rome on 29 November 2011 as a new global framework aiming at the conservation and sustainable use of the world’s diversity of plants on which food and agriculture depend. It underlines the commitment of the governments to ensure that management of plant diversity continues to be a key element in the global efforts to alleviate poverty and increase food security in times of climate change.

The main focus of the Second Global Plan of Action is to strengthen conservation and sustainable use of plants and seed systems and the crucial linkages between them, through a combination of appropriate policies, use of scientific information, farmers’ knowledge and action. It contains a set of 18 inter-related Priority Activities prepared on the basis of regional consultations and the gaps and needs identified by the Second Report on the State of  the World’s Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture and agreed under the aegis of  FAO Commission Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture.

The Second Global Plan of Action will accelerate the implementation of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. However, a full implementation of all the priorities as agreed by governments, will require commitment by each country in line with national programmes and priorities. Synergies will also need to be improved through active involvement of relevant international and regional organizations, countries, donors, educationists, scientists, farmers’ and breeders’ organizations, civil society, indigenous and local communities and the private sector. Success implementation will greatly contribute to the stewardship of the world’s wealth of genetic resources for the benefit of present and future generations.

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Updating the Global Plan of Action for the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

As a strategic framework, the Global Plan of Action needs to be periodically reviewed and updated to ensure that it continues to best serve country needs also in the light of new challenges such as climate change. In 2009, the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture endorsed the Second Report on the State of the World’s Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture and agreed to update the Global Plan of Action in accordance with the Strategic Plan 2010-2017 for the implementation of the Multi-Year Programme of Work (See Appendix G of CGRFA-12/09/Report). The Commision requested FAO to prepare the updated Global Plan of Action based primarily on the gaps and needs identified in the Second Report, taking into account further contributions from Governments, as well as inputs received from regional meetings and consultations. It was decided that the updated Global Plan of Action will then be considered at its next Regular Session in 2011.

The Second Report on the State of the World’s Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture has shown that interdependence on plant genetic resources is increasing at a global level and in many countries, efforts on conservation, on-farm management, crop improvement and seed systems are insufficiently integrated to adequately address present and future challenges, particularly food security, sustainable development and climate change.

Following the Commission’s recommendations, Regional Consultations are being organized in order to gather inputs for the Plan’s updating. In particular:

  • The European Consultation took place on 19-20 May 2010 in Tirana, Albania. Organized by FAO in collaboration with Bioversity International, SEEDNet and the Faculty of Agriculture and Environment of the Agricultural University of Tirana, it was funded by the FAO Regular Programme and SEEDNet.  (English report)
  • The African Consultation took place on 2-3 June 2010 in Nairobi, Kenya . It was jointly organized by FAO and Bioversity International, and funded with contributions from the Governments of Italy and Spain. (English report; French report)
  • The Consultation for Latin America and the Caribbean took place on 9-10 August 2010 in La Antigua, Guatemala. It was organized by FAO, the Secretariat of the International Treaty on PGRFA and Agencia Española de Cooperación Internacional para el Desarrollo with funding from the Government of Spain. (English report; Spanish report)
  • The Asian Consultation took place on 7-8 September 2010 in Chiangmai, Thailand. It was organized by FAO and its project “Capacity building and regional collaboration for enhancing the conservation and sustainable use of plant genetic resources in Asia - GCP/RAS/240/JPN” and funded by the Government of Japan. (English report)
  • The North American Consultation was held on the 21-22 September 2010 in Beltsville, Maryland, USA. (English Report)
  • The Near East, North Africa and Central Asia Consultation was convened in Aleppo, Syrian Arab Republic, 2-3 November 2010. The consultation was organized and funded by FAO with the collaboration of the International Center for Agricultural Research in Dry Areas (ICARDA).  (English report)
  • The South Pacific Consultation took place in Suva, Fiji, 7-10 December 2010. The Consultation was organized by FAO in collaboration with the Secretariat of Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, of the International Treaty on PGRFA and of the Pacific Community. Funding was provided by the Government of Australia. (Report)

Working document “Updating the Global Plan of Action” has been prepared in order to facilitate discussions during the Regional Consultations.

A first draft updated Global Plan of Action has been prepared based on the gaps and needs identified in the Second Report on the State of the World’s Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, and on the inputs gathered though the above seven regional consultations. The draft has been presented and discussed at the Meeting of the Joint Bureaus of the Commission and of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, 10 March 2011, and made available to the Fourth Session of the Governing Body of the International Treaty, 14-18 March, and to the Intergovernmental Technical Working Group on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture 27-29 April 2011 (Draft updated Global Plan of Action). The revised draft will be further discussed for its finalization at its Thirteenth Session of the Commission in July 2011.

For further information please contact: Stefano Diulgheroff, FAO Coordinator of the Global Plan of Action updating process (stefano.diulgheroff@fao.org).


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