Comisión Internacional del Álamo y otros Árboles de Crecimiento Rápido que Sustentan a la Población y al Medio Ambiente
Forgesii plants in Forestry Research Institute greenhouse, India. ©FAO/Giuseppe Bizzarri


IPC is one of the oldest statutory bodies within the framework of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). It was founded in 1947 by nine European countries in the aftermath of the Second World War, when poplar and willow culture was considered a priority to supporting reconstruction of rural and industrial economies.

IPC’s relationship with FAO was formalized in 1967 by placing it as a statutory body under the provisions of Art. XIV of the FAO Constitution. Statutory bodies are established by the Director-General of FAO at the request of Member States to carry out specific tasks in support of the work of FAO and to provide specialist advice in high-priority areas or questions. IPC now comprises 38 member countries that have accepted the Convention and established a national commission (NC).

IPC's mandate is the scientific, technical, social, economic and environmental aspects of Populus and other fast-growing trees that sustain people and the environment. Priorities of the Commission’s work are forest resources production, protection, conservation and utilization, with a view to sustaining livelihoods, land uses, rural development and the environment. This work includes food security issues, climate change and carbon sinks, biodiversity conservation and resilience against biotic and abiotic threats, and combating deforestation.

IPC has an important role in the development of the forest and timber sectors in rural areas, largely through the transfer of knowledge on fast-growing species and the exchange of technologies and breeding material.

For more information on the IPC see the FAO's governing bodies website for the IPC.


IPC is governed by a Convention adopted at the tenth session of the FAO Conference in November 1959, which established it as a statutory body within the framework of FAO. The most recent amendments to the Convention were adopted in 2019. IPC is summoned in regular sessions every four years (every two years prior to the 1977 amendments) by the Director-General of FAO, in consultation with the Chairperson of the IPC Executive Committee. It may also be convened in special sessions, if necessary. A session has normally been organized by one of the IPC member countries, after the Director-General of FAO has accepted its offer.

The Forestry Division of FAO provides the permanent Secretariat of IPC. The secretary is appointed by the Director-General of FAO to provide support duties to the Commission. The Executive Committee has 12 members elected in a personal capacity for a four-year term, and a maximum of five members co-opted for the same duration. All candidates are presented by member countries for their special competence. The committee meets during each session of the IPC and at least once between sessions.