WPC President Peter VanderZaag was honoured to receive an invitation to deliver an address at the Chinese Potato Expo, held in Shandong Province, as well as attend the Global Forum of Leaders for Agricultural Science and Technology (GLAST) in Sanya, both events held this past October, 2023.
Among those in attendance at the Chinese Potato Expo were the Honourable Mr. Chen Ping, Vice Governor of Shandong; Mr. Ma Youxiang, Vice Minister of MARA; Dr. Simon Heck, Director General of CIP and H.E. Marco Balarezo, Ambassador of Peru to China.
WPC President Peter VanderZaag, and Mr. Xiaoping Lu, WPC International Advisor and retired Director of the CIP-China Centre for Asia and Pacific (CCCAP). – See picture above
President VanderZaag shared with delegates at the Expo details around the upcoming World Potato Congress set to be held in Adelaide, Australia in June 2024. He also presented the mission and mandate behind the Congress. “The WPC has, as its primary mission, to hold global Congresses every second year. These Congresses bring together all the players in the potato value chain to network and share findings to pressing problems faced globally.”
He applauded the Chinese for their work alleviating poverty, particularly by improving potato production in the mountainous regions of Western China. VanderZaag continued by adding, “Our organizations have adopted the same global objective: ‘poverty alleviation through potato science and technology’ by implementing the Declaration of Dublin, introduced at the 11th World Potato Congress in Dublin in 2022.”
While in China, President Peter also attended the 7th Global Leaders in Agricultural Science and Technology (GLAST) sponsored by the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences; FAO; CGIAR & IAEA. The forum was well-attended by almost 600 participants from 49 countries. “While an invaluable opportunity time to reconnect with colleagues, it was challenging to hear about the status of the global food supply situation as we work together in addressing the UN’s sustainable development goals (SDGs). VanderZaag commented, “Potatoes will need to be a key player in helping meet the United Nations SDGs.”
The Global Hybrid (Diploid) Potato Alliance (GHPA) was officially launched at GLAST in Sanya, China. This strategy of working at the Diploid level will revolutionize how potatoes will be grown and will hopefully see the incremental yield potential as was seen with corn over the past 70 years.
WPC looks forward to their upcoming Congress in Adelaide, Australia as an opportunity to network with the global potato community and strive to explore opportunities where potatoes can be used to assist in bringing food security to vulnerable regions of the world.
Thank you to our Sustaining Partners for their ongoing contributions to the WPC global efforts.
For information on the World Potato Congress Inc.’s Sustaining Partner program and how to become a Sustaining Partner, please visit our website at: www.potatocongress.org or email email@example.com
We hope to see you in Adelaide, Australia in June 2024 for our next World Potato Congress! Registration is open! Click on the here for registration and program details.