CIOPORA, the International Association of Breeders of Asexually Reproduced Horticultural Varieties, held its Annual General Meeting on 17-20 April 2023 in Alexandria, USA. The event saw a record audience, with 170 professionals from the global plant breeding community in attendance. New Zealand-born Wendy Cashmore is the association’s 12th president, succeeding Steve Hutton. Wendy is CIOPORA’s first female president in the association’s 62nd history and has taken up the role for a three-year term.
The AGM allowed members to hear about the association’s performance and its priorities for the months ahead. The member event is one of the most important instances to learn and know more about the latest trends in breeders’ innovations and Intellectual Property protection.
The four-day event was full of insightful lectures and discussions by breeders, expert lawyers, researchers, university representatives, and authorities from several countries related to the plant breeding field. Some examples of the topics addressed during the convention were the importance of IP in the entire production chain; the concepts of EDV, the Variety Constituents and Harvested Material; the analysis of practical enforcement cases, among others.
Thanks to the relevance of the topics discussed and the participation of industry leaders worldwide, the CIOPORA AGM has positioned itself as a unique space dedicated completely to discussing intellectual property rights for plant breeders.
“The success of our AGM 2023 reflects the importance of innovation and plant improvement for our society. In order to incentivise plant breeding, it is necessary that all plant breeders enjoy adequate protection of their Intellectual Property that protects the fruit of their work,” said CIOPORA’s Secretary General, Dr Edgar Krieger.
As a major part of the AGM, the association members elected a new board and a new President, Ms Wendy Cashmore, who will lead the organisation for the next three years, bringing with her a wealth of experience and expertise in the plant breeding industry.
Wendy, a director of Trajectory 762 Ltd., an apple breeding company, and founding partner of Plant IP Partners, New Zealand, is the first woman, fruit representative, and the first inhabitant from the southern hemisphere to hold the position of President of the largest breeders’ association of asexually reproduced plants. “The AGM has been an exciting week connecting with horticultural plant breeders and IP experts worldwide. As always, we’ve had excellent opportunities to get up to date on global IP developments and to talk extensively about plant breeding innovation – and, a chance to grow our network of knowledgeable contacts, new colleagues and new collaborators. It’s also been a good time to a cknowledge the 62 years CIOPORA has committed to the progress of plant IP rights, the value of its positive approach to raising knowledge and IP awareness among its members, across the industry, and broader society,” said Wendy.
In 2024, this event will take place in Marrakesh, Morocco, between 15-19 April.
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