2023 August 22
MANILA – The Philippines will be hosting for the first time the International Rice Congress (IRC), a platform for rice-based food systems innovators to work towards shaping a food and nutrition secure future, in October this year.
Convened by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) every four years, previous congresses were held in Beijing (2002), New Delhi (2006), Hanoi (2010), Bangkok (2014) and Singapore (2018).
The 6th IRC, which expects 2,000 delegates throughout the rice value chain, is organized by IRRI, the Consortium of International Agriculture Research Centers (CGIAR) and the Department of Agriculture (DA).
Over a thousand abstracts covering the eight different themes of the conference had been received by IRRI Internal Communications Specialist Xenina Ibabao. These themes– which are the same guideposts and strategies adopted by the DA’s Rice Program– are: fast-tracking genetic solutions and varieties; one health and nutritious rice value chains; digital solutions across scales; nature-based farming solutions; transforming rice landscapes for climate resilience; partnerships for scaling and impact; sustainable global rice economy; and, societal equity, equality and prosperity.
Keynote speakers are Michael Graham, head of Crop Science Research and Development Breeding of Bayer; Prof. Sally Mackenzie of Biology and Plant Science of the Pennsylvania State University; Yvonne Pinto, Director of Bioeconomy-AgBio of Eagle Genomics; William Salas, Chief Strategy Officer of Regrow; Baboucarr Manneh, Director General of AfricaRice Center; Prof. Keijiro Otsuka of Development Economics of Kobe University of Japan; Secretary Himanshu Pathak of the Department of Agricultural Research and Education of New Delhi and Monetary Board member V. Bruce Tolentino, PhD of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.
Private sector groups from global corporations to agripreneurial startups will find a platform to showcase their innovations, build their networks and secure partnerships and investments. Non-government organizations and farmer groups can have an opportunity to be heard and their challenges addressed.
The Philippines, IRRI’s home country, is hosting the IRC at the Philippine International Convention Center, where the development of hybrid rice in the country and other new technologies will take centerstage. The IRC will be co-hosted by IRRI and the DA.
IRC brings together scientists, experts and decision makers from the government, public and private sectors to formulate evidence-based solutions to some of the biggest challenges of the global rice sector.
The main event is the gathering by the International Rice Research Conference of key experts and thought leaders from around the world to discuss emerging, current and future challenges of rice-based food systems and present exciting and innovative solutions.
An exhibition will provide the venue for stakeholders to showcase their innovations and technologies. It offers unique opportunities for creating awareness, collaboration and investment.
An international hybrid rice symposium brings together the world’s leading hybrid rice stakeholders from the public and private sectors to share their knowledge and forge partnerships in advancing hybrid rice technologies for food security.
The sustainable rice platform (SRP) symposium gathers global members and stakeholders to showcase SRP’s achievements from across the rice value chain and discuss new opportunities and plans for making the rice sector more sustainable and equitable for farmers.
A farmer’s forum offers scientists and high-level stakeholders a unique perspective from the farmers on the ground who will be given a platform to discuss their situations and connect with innovators and their solutions.
The rice market and traders symposium will intersect rice value chain actors like producers, millers, traders and retailers helping them better understand each other’s challenges and find opportunities for convergence and collaboration.