21 Dec 2012
Biosecurity is a key requirement for achieving the goals set out in the FAO Strategic Framework by promoting, developing and re-enforcing policy and regulatory frameworks for food, agriculture, fisheries, and forestry for managing risks associated with food and agriculture including relevant environment. The apple snail (Pomacea spp.) has become a serious pest of rice in the Asia and Pacific Region in the past few years. There is need for providing extensive technical assistance in improvement of capacity in effective management of this pest. Prevention and reduction of risks of transboundary threats to food production, health and the environment is one of focus areas of FAO to shares its experience, expertise and knowledge to achieve results and impact on the ground. The Regional Workshop on Spread Prevention and Control of Apple Snail (Pomacea Spp.) in Rice , was therefore held during 3-7 December 2012 in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia. Participants and observers from seven (7) countries attended the workshop. They were able to share their experiences and to gain expertise in this field from the experts. The workshop programme discussed the biology and ecology of the pest Pomacea spp. and its control strategies. The workshop presented the various methods to control Pomacea spp. i.e. physical control, cultural control, biological molluscicides, habitat modification, and chemical control. The regional action plan of GAS has also been discussed as a guideline in the implementation and enforcement to prevent spread and control of GAS. The workshop has developed action plan (Research, Capacity Building, Awareness Progamme/Communication/Information exchange) and management strategies to mitigate infestation, and drafted national awareness program and control measures and collating all reference materials of Pomacea spp. in participating cuntries. Activities suggested in the Awareness Programme should be given priority and implemented immediately in each country. Participants are expected to become the core trainers and experts on apple snails in their own countries, in addition, they are to convey information to the higher management level to give more emphasis in apple snail activities, to prepare draft training materials and action plan for the control of apple snails in the region, and to review and update on the reference materials.