8th Meeting of the Panel on Plant Protection Information
EPPO and NPPO activities in the framework of IYPH
Despite the difficult situation caused by the pandemic, many activities took place in 2020 in the framework of the International Year of Plant Heath. Panel members and the EPPO Secretariat presented some of their activities. In summary, communication activities launched in 2020 were extremely diverse, reflecting the creativity and enthusiasm of the plant health community. A few examples are listed below:
- Activities for children (activity booklets, games)
- Beastie the bug
- Dedicated websites on plant health
- EPPO Jens-Georg Unger Plant Health Fellowship
- Interviews in various media (TV, radio, Internet)
- Photo and video contests
- Postal stamps and coins
- Posters, leaflets, ‘goodies’
- Special events (conferences, exhibitions, sport competitions, training sessions)
- Videos on pests (e.g. Anoplophora spp., Popillia japonica, Spodoptera frugiperda) or about the risk of buying plants from the Internet
IYPH activities in Latvia
IYPH activities in Germany
Draft Standard on raising professional operators’ awareness of regulated and emerging plant pests
A large part of the meeting was dedicated to the preparation of a new Standard for which the main objective is to provide guidance to NPPOs on how to raise awareness among professional operators (e.g. producers, traders, resellers, exporters, importers) about regulated and emerging plant pests. Most of the text could be finalized but a few sections will need to be rewritten by a small drafting team before the text is circulated to all Panel members. If agreed, it is hoped that this draft Standard will be presented to the Working Party on Phytosanitary Measures in June 2022. Panel members were also asked to provide pictures of communication material which could be used as examples to illustrate the text of the Standard.
Feed-back on EPPO information services
This is a regular activity, and useful feedback was provided by the Panel to the EPPO Secretariat on all its information services (website, EPPO Global Database, EPPO Platform on PRA, EPPO Bulletin, EPPO Reporting Service and social media). This feedback is essential for the EPPO Secretariat to understand how these services can be improved to better meet user’s needs. The Panel was informed that the platform on communication material is still under development, but it is hoped that a pilot will be released in 2022.
Presentations were made on the diagnostic databases (EPPO-Q-bank Diagnostic expertise ), as well as on the new EPPO database on Resistance Cases (in the field of plant protection products) which was released in September 2021. All these information services can easily be retrieved from the EPPO website.
Finally, a presentation was made by the Euphresco coordinator on the DROP (Digital Research Object Portal) which is an online repository where scientific articles, raw data and other tools used in research can be accessed.
Panel members were informed of the outcome of two ongoing special projects: 1) EPPO Codes; 2) revision of the EPPO datasheets. These two projects are co-financed by the European Commission. The project on EPPO Codes will finish in December 2021. This project has facilitated the creation of many new Codes (more than 12 000 over a 3-year period) and further improvements in the coding system (e.g. taxonomic updates, inclusion of the harmonized classification of plant protection product uses, a monthly newsletter).
Concerning the revision of the EPPO datasheets on regulated pests, this project started in 2020 and will end in September 2024. So far, with the help of more than 80 experts, approximately 130 datasheets have been revised and transferred into the EPPO Global Database. In these new datasheets, the sections on identity, geographical distribution and host plants are dynamically generated from the EPPO Global Database, and therefore automatically updated.
Panel members were also informed that discussions are currently taking place between the European Commission and the EPPO Secretariat on the possible development of guidance documents for professional operators.
Collaboration with partners
Ms Charles (CABI) updated the Panel on the recent work done by CABI on different programmes (e.g. PlantwisePlus, development of open access journals, distribution maps for pests and diseases, compendia and datasheets, horizon scanning tool).
The next Panel meeting is planned in early 2023, but for the moment no dates and location have been decided.