Vittorio Venturi (R) chairs the session on Emerging biotechnologies and informatics technologies at the FAO Global Conference on Green Development of Seed Industries, 4-5 November 2021

Vittorio Venturi for FAO: Green development of seed industries vital for feeding the world’s growing population

Vittorio Venturi co-chairs a session at the FAO Global Conference on Green Development of Seed Industries.

On 4-5 November, 2021, The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) organized the Global Conference on Green Development of Seed Industries to pave the road towards achieving green development in the agri-food sector, with a focus on farmers’ need to access quality seeds as part of crucial agri-food systems transformation.

Member of the Scientific Advisory Panel of the Global Conference, Dr. Vittorio Venturi co-chaired a session on Emerging biotechnologies and informatics technologies, with Sobhana Sivasankar, Section Head, Plant Breeding and Genetics, Joint FAO-IAES Centre for Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture, to review the advances in modern plant breeding technologies, emerging biotechnologies, and informatics technologies.

The session focussed on the safe and efficient delivery of genetic gains to farmers, and also facilitated a stocktaking of the available tools. 

FAO Director-General QU Dongyu stated: “There are no good crops without good seeds. The world’s farmers must have access to seeds for more productive, nutritious and climate-resilient crop varieties if they are to produce the 50 percent more food needed for a global population predicted to reach ten billion by 2050.”

Vittorio Venturi commented: “Being involved in this FAO conference meant working over the last months with inspiring people from different but related fields with the passionate, common goal of improving seed quality for world farmers.” Adding, “It is a big challenge that we have ahead of us and the several emerging technologies that were presented and discussed (such as genome editing, DSI, AI, the omics) will play a key role in the development of the next-generation seeds.”

The two-day conference represents aneutral forum for stakeholders to engage in focused dialogues on how best to make quality seeds of preferred productive, nutritious and resilient crop varieties available to farmers. As a result, evidence will be produced for actions towards the realisation of the goals of FAO’s Strategic Framework 2022-31: for the transformation to more efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable agri-food systems for better production, better nutrition, a better environment and a better life, thus contributing to achieving the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially SDGs 2 and 1.

Conference webcast