By Development Communication Section
Delegates and participants in the Forum on the Global Alliance for Agricultural Biotech Trade (GAABT) Model Policy on Low-Level Presence (LLP) and GM and Organic Farming Co-existence met during the APEC High-Level Policy Dialogue on Agricultural Biotechnology (HLPDAB) in Iloilo City, Philippines on September 30,2015.
As part of the efforts to ensure food security among member economies of APEC, genetically modified crops with various advantageous traits and organic farming are among the topics discussed during the two-day meeting on “Enhancing cooperation on biotechnology for improved resiliency, inclusive growth and food security.”
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Just as the delegates of the 6th Meeting of the APEC Policy Partnership on Science, Technology, and Innovation (PPSTI) visited the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) in August, on October 01, 2015 the participants of the APEC High-Level Policy Dialogue on Agricultural Biotechnology visited the main station of the Aquaculture Department of the Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center (SEAFDEC/AQD).
During the visit of the guest delegates at the Tigbauan Main Station of SEAFDEC/AQD, the Chief Dr. Felix G. Ayson narrated to them the history of the Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center, which started in 1967 and the inception of the Aquaculture Department in 1973. The SEAFDEC narrative was followed by a talk by the Research Division Head, Dr. Evelyn Grace de Jesus-Ayson, on the various research activities of AQD including technology generation, training and information generation on a wide range of aquaculture disciplines, including broodstock management and seed quality improvement, promotion of responsible and environment-friendly aquaculture, disease diagnosis and control, feed development for the various life stages of the aquaculture commodities and the production of seed stocks for the stock enhancement of threatened species. Dr. de Jesus-Ayson also emphasized that AQD promotes good aquaculture practices and effective management of aquatic resources to support rural development to alleviate poverty and provide food security.
After that, the delegates proceeded to view the aquaculture commodity kiosks and interacted with the resource persons. They also did a food-tasting of deliciously prepared SEAFDEC commodities and Ilonggo delicacies while being entertained by Tribu Panayanon of the Iloilo City National High School, the 2015 Dinagyang Champion and they then toured the hatchery facilities and laboratories of AQD’s Tigbauan Main Station including AQD’s Fishworld Museum of Aquatic Biodiversity, which caused their extended stay and late departure from AQD.