25 April 2022

Conference - New Genomic Techniques


It is our pleasure to announce that the conference “New Genomic Techniques – Modern biotechnology for the agri-food industry”, will be held at the Plant Breeding and Acclimatization Institute - National Research Institute in Radzików on 28th of April 2022.

This conference is organised by 3 institutions: the Plant Breeding and Acclimatisation Institute - National Research Institute, the Federation of the Food Economy of the Republic of Poland and the Polish Seed Association.

The conference will be a hybrid event with simultaneous translation.

The patronage over the conference was taken by the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Mr. Henryk Kowalczyk. (link)

Conference summary

A study published in April 2021 by the European Commission on the status of New Genomic Techniques  ('NGT') confirmed that products produced using NGT can contribute to the creation of sustainable agri-food systems and thus to the achievement of the objectives of the European Green Deal and the Farm to Fork Strategy. The European Commission also pointed out that the legislation in force in the European Union(EU) does not keep up with scientific developments, which limits the use of NGT in practice. New Genomic Techniques allow to change genetic material in a more precise way than conventional techniques, which means that they have not only a high scientific potential but also an application potential in plant breeding, food production and even pharmaceuticals.

The Institute of Plant Breeding and Acclimatization - National Research Institute (IHAR-PIB) , the Federation of Food Economy of the Republic of Poland and the Polish Seed Trade Association organized a scientific conference entitled "New Genomic Techniques - Modern biotechnology for the agri-food sector" which took place on 28.04.2022 at the headquarters of IHAR-PIB in Radzików. The organization of the conference met with great interest of scientific workers, plant breeders, representatives of food producers and state administration. Domestic and foreign speakers presented topics in the area of: introduction to technology and practical limitations of their application; detection, identification and labeling; legislation and its global harmonisation; challenges for European and Polish plant breeding resulting from the climate change, implementation of innovations and competition; patenting and licensing of intellectual property. A large number of questions for speakers and a lively discussion during the expert panel indicate that NGT are currently one of the most important topics for the broadly understood agri-food sector.

Summing up the conference, the following conclusions can be formulated:

  • NGT compared to commonly used technologies have a high application potential,
  • the number of research and development activities carried out in the area of NGT is increasing worldwide.
  • there are few NGT products on the world markets, however many are already at the stage of advanced research and preparation for implementation,
  • Polish plant breeding companies are interested in using innovative technologies in their breeding programs,
  • food producers show interest in using products made from plants obtained by means of innovative breeding methods,
  • regulations developed in the EU should enable the practical use of NGT and ensure the required safety and harmonisation of risk assessment,
  • NGT can contribute to sustainable food production in the context of global climate change and changing geopolitical conditions.

We hope that this meeting will contribute to greater involvement of various stakeholders (e.g. EU and national public authorities, breeders, farmers, economic operators from the agri-food sector, academia and science and non-governmental organizations) to the substantive discussion and understanding of current activities in the EU in the area of NGT. This is necessary in order to elaborate together with third countries regulations that are beneficial for the EU.  The public consultation announced on 29.04.2022 by the European Commission entitled "Legislation on plants produced using certain new genomic techniques" is an opportunity for us to have an impact on the solutions currently being developed in the EU.

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