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Task force on Fusarium wilt Tropical Race 4 (TR4)

The World Banana Forum is open to all stakeholders and includes the participation of banana farmers, shippers and traders, retailers, scientists, civil society organizations, trade unions and government representatives. WBF partners are aware of the threat of the Tropical Race 4 strain of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense (TR4) causing Fusarium wilt (also known as Panama disease) to Cavendish bananas. Several other banana cultivars are susceptible to TR4. Fusarium wilt TR4 is a threat to the livelihoods of millions of producers and workers and to the banana industry.

Given the importance of TR4 for all stakeholders, the WBF created the TR4 Task Force in December 2013, headed by an ad-hoc committee of Steering Committee members and WBF partners.

Composition of the Task Force


  • Luud Clercx (Technical Assistance for Sustainable Trade & Environment - TASTE)


  • Inge van den Bergh (Bioversity International)
  • Gert Kema (Plant Research International, Wageningen University and Research Centre - PRI-WUR)
  • Thierry Lescot (French Agricultural Research Centre for International Development - CIRAD)
  • Sarah Schmidt (The Sainsbury Laboratory)
  • Enrique Uribe (GLOBALG.A.P.)
  • Frederic Verborg (Chiquita)
  • Morag Webb (The Europe-Africa-Caribbean-Pacific Liaison Committee - COLEACP) 

With the support of:

  • Pascal Liu & Victor Prada (Secretariat of the World Banana Forum - FAO)
  • Fazil Dusunceli (Plant Production and Protection Department - FAO)
  • Miguel Dita (Latin American and Caribbean Network of Banana Researchers - MUSALAC/EMBRAPA)