Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Thursday, April 25, 2024

Soil health and global food security: Research & innovation

25 April 2024.
9:30 AM to 1:30 PM. Brussels. TP Organics Soil health and global food security: Research & innovation for productive and sustainable agriculture.
The event will feature presentations and discussions on practical approaches to integrating biological inputs into farming practices, drawing insights from experiences in both the European Union and Africa.
  • Herman Van Mellaert, President at International Biocontrol Manufacturers Association (IBMA), the voice of the Biocontrol technologies industry, will give a key-note speech setting the scene, introducing the topic of biocontrol and why it is crucial for sustainable agriculture, while also presenting the activities of IBMA: Keynote: Biocontrol – green innovative and effective technologies for sustainable agri-food
  • Lakshmi Manavalan, Senior Program Officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, will showcase projects and practices the Gates Foundation has carried out, applying biocontrol technology in different scenarios. Overview of importance of biofertilizers, Gates investments in this area and the need for more investment
  • Stefaan De Neve, professor at Ghent University, will share insights from his research on soil nutrients while also raising the critical question of sourcing nitrogen in the future, when there will be no more mineral fertiliser produced. Scientific research on soil nutrients and challenge of replacing mineral nitrogen fertiliser.
  • Raveendran Muthurajan, Director of research at Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU), will delve into TNAU’s research and case studies on biocontrol and agroecology from an Indian point of view. Barriers to adoption and TNAU’s projects on biostimulants efficacy testing from South Asian perspective
  • Bernard Vanlauwe, R4D Director at IITA, will present their current research project in Nigeria. Future research needs for product development and current research projects of IITA, the lead research partner facilitating agricultural solutions in the Sub-Saharan region

Panel discussion: Barriers to and options for uptake of biocontrol and biostimulants as well as future research needs for sustainable and productive agri-food systems at EU and international level

  • Klaus Berend, Deputy Director General for Food Sustainability at DG SANTE, European Commission, will join the high-level panel debate and bring in the policy perspective.
  • Gisela Quaglia, Research Programme Officer at DG AGRI, European Commission, is specialist for biocontrol and bio-pesticides and fertilisers and related research topics under the Horizon programmes.
  • Inge Van Daele, Portfolio and ESG Manager at Aphea.Bio, will present this Belgian technology platform dedicated to food security and ensuring a safe and healthy food chain.
  • Herman Van Mellaert 
  • Bernard Vanlauwe 
  • Moderator: Rose O’Donovan, Editor, AGRA FACTS

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