Agricultural Biotechnologies
Agricultural Biotechnologies in crops, forestry, livestock, fisheries and agro-industry  Biotech-banner

The items focus on conferences, workshops, training courses and other events organised by FAO, other UN agencies/bodies and the 15 CGIAR research centres. The events cover all food and agricultural sectors (crops, forestry, fisheries/aquaculture, livestock, agro-industry) and a wide range of biotechnologies (e.g. use of molecular markers, artificial insemination, triploidisation, biofertilisers, micropropagation, genomics, genetic modification etc.). The news and event items on this website are also disseminated through an e-mail newsletter called FAO-BiotechNews that is published in six different versions, one per language i.e. Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish. To subscribe, send a message to [email protected] indicating which e-mail addresses are to be subscribed and in which language they wish to receive the newsletter.


The objectives of this international conference, co-organised by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), are to "to give a presentation of the new technologies applied to the detection of agents or toxins, the diagnosis of mainly animal but also human diseases and the quality control of human and veterinary vaccines". The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) is an inter-governmental organisation with 167 Member Countries.
Saint-Malo. France
The main mission of this conference, organised with technical contributions from FAO, among others, is "to explore the possibilities of science and technology applications to crop improvement and crop management under drought-prone farming by linking progress made at the molecular level to that at the whole plant and crop levels in the field. This conference will provide recommendations on the most effective approaches to achieve better crop productivity under drought conditions as well as the research needed to move forward in this direction".
Rome. Italy
Organised by the International Plant Genetic Resources Institute (IPGRI) in collaboration with the CRYMCEPT project (an European Union (EU) funded project on Establishing cryopreservation methods for conserving European plant germplasm collections), the workshops aims 1) to create awareness among decision-makers on the importance of cryopreservation and how it can be useful effectively to conserve plant genetic resources and 2) to train germplasm collection holders on how to develop and optimise cryopreservation techniques and protocols to more effectively conserve germplasm of importance to their regions, countries and institutions. Participants may register for Part 1 (2-days targeted at decision-makers) or the whole workshop. Some participants from EU international co-operation target counties may also attend. Deadline for receiving applications for the workshop or requests for financial support (will be provided to at least 10 applicants) is 31 March 2005.
Leuven. Belgium
A theoretical and practical course organised by the Department of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, Atomic Energy Commission of Syria on behalf of the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology. Deadline is 30 May.
Damascus. Syria
This conference, convened in partnership with, among others, the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity and the United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre, is run in four parallel and two plenary sessions. One of four themes for the parallel session on "Biodiversity, food and agriculture" is dedicated to "Genetic resource use and food biotechnology".
Galway. Ireland
Organised by FAO and the International Feed Industry Federation, this congress also includes six panel sessions, one of which is dedicated to biotechnology.
São Paulo. Brazil
This theoretical and practical course is organised by the Sokoine University of Agriculture on behalf of the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB). The syllabus includes livestock, plant and microbial models. Nationals of ICGEB Member States selected to participate on an ICGEB grant will have their accommodation and local hospitality, but not travel, funded. The course is limited to 20 participants and the deadline for applications is 15 April.
Morogoro. Tanzania
A theoretical and practical training course that will survey the algorithms and methods used in sequence and genome data analysis organised, among others, by ICRO-UNESCO and ICGEB. Applications for the 15 placesshould be sent before 31 December. Grants cover accommodation/meals but not travel. Candidates should have a masters degree; be actively involved in a research structure in biology, mathematics, informatics or statistics; have a good knowledge of computer applications and practice of both French and English languages.
Sfax. Tunisia
Organised by the FAO Working Group on Biotechnology, the Fondazione per le Biotecnologie and the ECONOGENE project. The workshop includes three sessions on the status of the world`s agro-biodiversity; the use of biotechnology for conservation of genetic resources; and genetic characterisation of populations and its use in conservation decision-making. There is also a poster session and a session on the final results from ECONOGENE (a European Union funded project on biodiversity and conservation of sheep and goat breeds reared in marginal rural areas).
Turin. Italy
Organised by the Instituto de Biotecnologia Aplicada à Agropecuária, Universidade Federal de Viçosa and the Flanders Interuniversity Institute for Biotechnology, Belgium, on behalf of the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, this course covers the topics of continuous culture, real-time PCR analysis, micro-array analysis, the two-hybrid system and PCR mutagenesis. Deadline is 20 December.
Viçosa. Brazil
This hands-on training workshop, organised by the Seeds and Plant Genetic Resources Service of FAO and the International Seed Testing Association, is for seed testing analysts from the Caribbean region. The aim is to train seed technicians in advanced methods for the verification of species, cultivars and hybrids as well as for qualitative and quantitative GMO detection.
Kingston. Jamaica Latin America and the Caribbean
Key points for discussions during this workshop, organised by FAO`s Crop and Grassland Service, will be strategies to strengthen national plant breeding and biotechnology capacity; crop, country and/or regional strategy; the balance between plant breeding and biotechnology; how to achieve sustainability to use plant genetic resources; the role of CGIAR centres; the role of donor agencies; the role of strong national agricultural research systems; the role of private sector; policies to enhance private sector investments; enabling policies for public and private actions; and advice on future consultations.
Rome. Italy
This practical and theoretical course, organised at the University of Chile as part of the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology`s training programme, is divided in two parts. The first part (open to all interested persons that register, deadline 6 January) is a series of lectures given by invited speakers and the national faculty. The second part (limited to 14 students, that receive a fellowship from the organizer committee, deadline 30 November), is a practical course consisting of a series of experiments that will be developed by the students.
Santiago. Chile
This hands-on training workshop, organised by the Seeds and Plant Genetic Resources Service of FAO and the International Seed Testing Association, is for seed testing analysts from the Near East and North Africa region. The aim is to train seed technicians in advanced methods for the verification of species, cultivars and hybrids as well as for qualitative and quantitative GMO detection. It is limited to 18 participants, who should be actual technicians, with at least a basic knowledge or experience in the field of variety verification or GMO detection. The deadline for registration is 20 November 2004.
Giza. Egypt
Organised by the Gender Advisory Board of the UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development and the Biotechnology Commission of Pakistan, the purpose of this expert workshop is to address the gender dimensions of research, policy and application of new biotechnologies in the region. The workshop will be small (15-20 participants) and discussion- rather than presentation-based. Travel and local accommodation costs of five participants will be paid by the organisers. Potential attendees should send a brief summary of their views of the critical issues around how biotechnology policy, research and application can benefit women in the region; and what they would bring to the meeting in terms of experience, expertise and critical reflection in the area. Applications will be accepted until 31 October. A paper, entitled "Critical issues pertaining to the gender dimensions of biotechnology policy", by S. Thomas has been commissioned for the workshop (
Islamabad. Pakistan Asia
A theoretical and practical course organised by the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB). Registration is limited to 16 participants and the deadline is 1 August.
New Delhi. India
The conference, organised by the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and co-organised by several other parties including the International Rice Research Institute, aims to provide the latest research information on a wide range of rice-related issues such as international food security, poverty alleviation, and the environment.
Tokyo and Tsukuba. Japan
A training course on applications of molecular genetics techniques to enhance the management of fisheries resources, organised by the WorldFish Center, one of the research centres supported by the CGIAR. Participants may choose to enlist in either the first part (25-29 October) or both the first and second (30 October - 16 November) parts of the course. Deadline is 30 July 2004. The course was originally announced for March/April 2004 but has been re-scheduled.
Penang. Malaysia
Organised by the joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture in co-operation with the International Plant Genetic Resources Institute. A special focus of the course will be one week of computer-based training on mapping and phylogenetic analyses. The training course is open to 20 participants from developing Member States of FAO and the International Atomic Energy Agency. Deadline for nominations is 30 June 2004.
Seibersdorf. Austria
The conference, co-organised by the University of Jaén, the Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD) and FAO, focuses on different topics related to traditional fermented foods, especially those from developing countries. One of the themes to be addressed concerns "molecular tools to study microbial diversity, virulence factors and food-borne pathogens".
Jaén. Spain
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