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Helping Develop Capacity in Plant Protection and Quarantine

The capacity to trade is integral to economic growth—and the ability to trade safe agricultural products both within a country and for export depends upon a functional plant health system. Strengthening a country’s plant protection and quarantine systems can have a major impact on producer incomes. Systems to monitor and reduce the risk of pest and diseases and the ability to respond to outbreaks can help support agricultural producers.

To help achieve these goals, Feed the Future is supporting USDA international training programs in select focus countries to train plant health officials on improving and maintaining plant protection and quarantine systems. In June and July 2012, six plant health officials from Haiti and Bangladesh completed training on these topics in North Carolina and Washington, DC. Participants learned the benefits of establishing regulatory frameworks based on sound science and formal protocols. 

USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) hosts annual plant health systems analysis training for international plant health officials, demonstrating to participants elements of plant health safeguarding practices in the United States. The training aims to enhance participants’ knowledge, skills, and abilities to develop science-based regulatory systems in their home countries that guard against harmful pests and diseases in plant production systems. APHIS also hosts an annual training program on risk analysis for plant protection.

Both courses provided partner country participants the opportunity to interact one-on-one with APHIS and U.S. university technical experts and builds international networks to combat global plant health issues. These programs also facilitate international trade.   

Following the APHIS training this summer, Haitian participants will apply their knowledge and skills to several institutional strengthening and capacity development activities at the Plant Protection and Quarantine section of the Haitian Ministry of Agriculture. Participants from Bangladesh will apply their training to a Feed the Future-funded Sanitary and Phytosanitary program. 

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