The “International Webinar on new EU Plant Health Regulation with special reference for seeds” was successfully conducted on December 14th, 2020 in cooperation with DAC&FW, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Govt. of India and the National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources (NBPGR), Delhi in the frame of the Indo-German Cooperation Project on Seed Sector Development. The project is part of the bilateral cooperation programme of the German Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) and implemented by the consortium of ADT Project Consulting GmbH (ADT) and German Plant Breeders’ Association (BDP). The objective of the project is to strengthen the Indian seed sector and to facilitate the cooperation of Indian and German institutions in the seed sector.

The new EU Plant Health Regulation provides measures for controlling and managing pests depending on the risk they represent from an economic, environmental, social, and agricultural point of view, and according to their impact on the quality of production. The new EU Plant Health Regulation was recently adopted and is applicable from December 14, 2019. Indians fast growing seed industry is interested to export seeds to the EU. Therefore, to facilitate trade of seeds it is very important to understand first of all the requirements of the EU. Seed produced in non-EU countries like India must offer the same guarantee of quality as EU seed. The aim of the webinar was to exchange experience and know-how on the requirements and quality standards for seed.

More than 60 officials from the  Seed Department of DAC & FW, MOA, GOI, scientists from National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources (NBPGR), Plant Health officials from Directorate of Plant Protection, Quarantine and Storage, Seed Certification Officials from OECD Designated Seed Certification Agencies of India, Plant Health Scientists of National Agricultural Research System of India (from ICAR and SAUs), seed sector experts and the German Plant Breeders’ Association (BDP) attended this webinar & participated in active discussions.

Among the German participations were the German project Team Leader of ADT, 2 experts from the Institute for National and International Plant Health at the Julius Kühn-Institut (JKI), the German Federal Research Centre for Cultivated Plants, 1 expert of the German Federal Plant Variety Office (BSA) and 2 experts of the German Federal Office of Agriculture and Food (BLE).

The technical program of the webinar covered various topics such as:

– Overview about institutional framework in India related to plant health issues;

– Overview about institutional framework in Germany related to plant health issues;

– Introduction to main elements of Plant Health with relevance for seed and propagating material in new Regulations and Implementing Measures of the EU;

– Import of plants and plant products from Third Countries – New Phytosanitary requirements and procedures for import of plants, including seeds under the new EU Plant Health Regulation;

– The new EU Plant Health Regulation with special reference to seed certification;

– Procedures and standards for the approval of import of plant products and seed from third countries like India.