Speakers and supporters announced for AIPH Plant Health Conference 2021

The International Association of Horticultural Producers (AIPH), in association with FloraCulture International, is inviting all those involved in the ornamental horticulture supply chain to attend its virtual Plant Health Conference. Working Together for Better Plant Health is the objective of this online conference. It will take place on 24 March 2021 and is free to attend for registered participants.

This virtual event is recognised by the International Year of Plant Health (IYPH 2020) which is supported by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) and the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC).

The conference programme reflects the theme of Working Together for Better Plant Health. It will include presentations from international industry experts who describe what the industry itself is doing to tackle the threats posed by notifiable pests and diseases.

Speaker Programme

Mr Ralf Lopian, Chair of the International Steering Committee for the IYPH 2020, will provide the conference keynote speech. His presentation KEEPING OUR WORLD GREEN – Raising the profile of plant health, will address the justification on why we have an IYPH 2020? Why plant health is important to producers and traders; how the future could look, and how public/private partnerships in plant health are especially important.

Dr Audrey Gerber, AIPH Technical Advisor, will talk about national plant health initiatives, sharing the results of AIPH’s recent international survey. AIPH developed the survey to gather information about industry-led plant health initiatives to assist in improving plant health systems and practices throughout the global supply chain.

Taking the pulse of worldwide plant health

In brief, many countries have introduced voluntary schemes, certification and initiatives that support the horticulture industry to produce, trade, and supply high-quality live plants and flowers by defining best practice plant health measures. Case studies presented in this conference provide an overview and a comparison of how voluntary schemes are established and implemented around the world. In conclusion, this evidence creates an exceptionally valuable platform to assess the need for more international collaboration that will further strengthen the industry and reduce plant health threats for the future.

Mr Peter Vaughan, Greenlife Industry Australia will explain how the Australian ornamentals industry has collaborated with regulators to create a robust plant health system.

Mr Leonardo Capitanio, President of the Italian Nurserystock Exporters Association (ANVE) will share his experiences on how Italian growers have tackled the challenges of Xylella and how they are providing more plant health assurances for the future.

Dr Alistair Yeomans will present the development of the new Plant Healthy programme for the UK. Talking about how it is being implemented in the industry. And what plans they have for the future.

Mr John van Ruiten, Director of Naktuinbouw in the Netherlands will describe the structure and process of two plant health programmes that support different sectors of the ornamental horticulture industry.

Mr Craig Regelbrugge, Senior Vice President-Advocacy and Research, AmericanHort, will describe programmes in the USA that are facilitating the movement of plants across regional and international borders.

The Canadian Nursery and Landscape Association present their perspective on the value of their ISO-like system approach to achieve nursery certification. Looking at how it contributes to an industry that produces plants that meet high phytosanitary standards.

Thank you to our supporters

In conclusion, commenting on the need for the event, AIPH Secretary General, Tim Briercliffe says, “We are very grateful to our members and industry supporters for completing the survey and participating in this conference. AIPH undertook the survey to get a neutral assessment of plant health management systems in the global supply chain of ornamental horticulture. This enables the sharing of knowledge and best practice which may stimulate more initiatives in different countries.”

Primarily, this conference will be of interest to growers, breeders, traders, retailers, associations, exhibitions, regulators, and anyone that cares about reducing plant health threats while maintaining a thriving horticultural trade.

The ongoing impact of safety measures against coronavirus means that rather than a physical international conference, we shall be using the multi-faceted Hopin platform to host this online international event where delegates from around the world can meet in real-time.

AIPH recognises the support of our Gold Sponsor Royal FloraHolland and Bronze Sponsor Visser Horti Systems. We are grateful to our Event Partners, CIOPORA, EPIC (European Photonics Industry Consortium), Fleuroselect and Naktuinbouw. Special thanks also to our Media Partners Gartner Tidende, Horticulture Week and Pod Osłonami.

The event is free, register for the AIPH Plant Health conference 2021.


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