Seed Info No. 40
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Seed Info aims to stimulate information exchange and regular communication among seed staff in the Central and West Asia and North Africa (CWANA) region. The purpose is to help strengthen national seed programs and thus improve the supply of quality seed to farmers. The WANA Seed Network corner provides information on the ECOSA 2010 Seed Conference. It covers highlights of the General Assembly, Technical Workshop and Seed and Seed Technology Fair held from 28–31 October 2010 in Istanbul, Turkey. Members and representatives of ECO member countries from Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Turkey, and Uzbekistan attended the conference. Members of the Afghanistan Seed Association (ANSOR), Seed Association of Kyrgyzstan (SAK), Seed Association of Tajikistan (SAT), Turkish Seed Union (TÜRK TOB) and its Sub-Unions (TSÜAB, etc.), and the recently formed Seed Association of Pakistan (SAP) participated in the conference. ECOSA members, representatives from the ECO Secretariat, FAO, ICARDA, OECD, ISTA, UPOV, and the public and private seed sectors from various countries also attended the conference. In the NEWS AND VIEWS section, we present the second part of the article on ‘Reconciling UPOV and integrated seed systems’ by Niels Louwaars from Wageningen University, The Netherlands. Part 1 introduced the two intellectual property rights (IPR) systems that currently exist in the seed industry. Part 2 of the article aims to reconcile development, food security and agro-biodiversity policies and their effect on seed systems, leading to approaches integrating seed systems development with IPR that countries have to implement following the WTO and bilateral trade agreements. This section continues with an analysis of seed systems and the possible solutions to the problems that may arise. There is news from regional and/or international organizations such as the African Union Commission (AU), the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV) and the Association of Official Seed Analysts (AOSCA). AU reports on a case study initiated on integrated seed system development across Africa under the African Seed and Biotechnology Program. UPOV reports on the outcome of its ordinary assembly meeting where key decisions were made regarding membership, approval of guidelines, etc. and AOSA Rules for Seed Testing. There is also news about a newly enacted biosafety law in Turkey. The section on SEED PROGRAMS includes news from Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan and Turkey. The news from Afghanistan is the enactment of the seed law whereas the news from Iran covers the release of barley varieties developed from germplasm provided by ICARDA through the international nurseries network. The news from Pakistan and Turkey focuses on the formation or role of existing seed trade associations in strengthening the national seed industry. There are also some highlights on the seed industry in Turkey. The RESEARCH section aims to capture information on adaptive research or issues relevant to seed program development in the region and beyond. This issue features an article entitled ‘Redesigning a purity testing system: development of an ergonomic, high-vision, continuous-flow seed inspection system’ by Adriel Garay et al. from Oregon State University (OSU). The article describes an ergonomic, high-vision system, the Ergo Vision System (EVS), for grass seed purity testing developed through a partnership between OSU Seed Laboratory and Mater International (supplier of tabletop seed-testing equipment) and OEM (laboratory equipment manufacturers). The performance of the EVS shows greater flexibility, speed, accuracy, and productivity, and better comfort and working conditions for the analysts and supervisors alike. Seed Info encourages the exchange of information in the national, regional, and global seed industry.