Sci­ence com­mu­nity won’t for­get the SPPH con­fer­ence

Central and North Rural Weekly - - NEWS - Jenny Cobon, APPS con­fer­ence chair­woman

PHEW! I’m sure ev­ery­one feels the same at the com­ple­tion of a ma­jor event – in my case the clos­ing ses­sion of the Sci­ence Pro­tect­ing Plant Health Con­fer­ence (SPPH) was both a re­lief (we did it!) and a huge buzz (we did it!). And what an event.

SPPH was a melt­ing pot of sci­ence and cul­ture with about 500 del­e­gates from 30 coun­tries, rep­re­sent­ing many fields of sci­ence, 172 posters and 90 stu­dents.

Such di­ver­sity is a re­flec­tion of the in­ter­na­tional im­por­tance of plant health sci­ence.

SPPH marked the 21st bi­en­nial con­fer­ence for the APPS.

This event was par­tic­u­larly mem­o­rable be­cause of the op­por­tu­nity to part­ner with the Plant Biose­cu­rity CRC in shap­ing and de­liv­er­ing what was a very spe­cial con­fer­ence, link­ing both fun­da­men­tal and prac­ti­cal sci­ence with end-users.

While the in­ter­ests of the APPS are di­verse, biose­cu­rity is a key theme, with many of our mem­bers work­ing di­rectly at the coalface of plant biose­cu­rity, such as quar­an­tine of­fi­cers, teach­ers, stu­dents, pol­icy mak­ers, in­dus­try lead­ers and pest man­age­ment per­son­nel.

The many work­shops and prac­ti­cal demon­stra­tions of­fered through­out the pro­gram pro­vided fur­ther op­por­tu­nity for del­e­gates to up­skill.

Par­tic­u­larly pop­u­lar were the plant pathogen iden­ti­fi­ca­tion work­shops, iden­ti­fi­ca­tion of brown mar­morated stink bug and Pest­point.

The ap­pli­ca­tion of sci­ence-based tech­nolo­gies, as demon­strated through these and other work­shops, is help­ing Aus­tralia and New Zealand keep pace with ev­er­p­re­sent biose­cu­rity threats and pro­vid­ing ev­i­dence of the im­pact re­search is de­liv­er­ing to na­tional biose­cu­rity ob­jec­tives.

We ap­pre­ci­ate the sup­port of all our spon­sors, in­clud­ing the Depart­ment of Agri­cul­ture and Wa­ter Re­sources, Plant Health Aus­tralia, Grains Re­search and De­vel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tion, Min­istry for Pri­mary In­dus­tries NZ, Cot­ton Re­search and De­vel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tion, Agri­cul­ture Vic­to­ria and Ru­ral Weekly. Fi­nally, on be­half of the APPS I of­fer my thanks to our co-con­venor the Plant Biose­cu­rity CRC, the or­gan­is­ing com­mit­tee, our vol­un­teers and of course to all of you who par­tic­i­pated.


Guests en­joy a talk at the SPPH con­fer­ence in Bris­bane.

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