Food and Fertilizer Technology Center - publications

Oct. 27, 2020

TAC members emphasize FFTC’s need to adapt to the COVID-19 era

TAC members emphasize FFTC’s need to adapt to the COVID-19 era

The TAC member management team headed by FFTC Director Dr. Su-San Chang (seated 3rd from left) and Deputy Director Dr. Akira Hasebe (seated rightmost) together with TARI DG Dr. Hsueh Shih Lin (seated leftmost) and COA’s Mr. Vincent Lin (seated 2nd from left) pose for posterity after the three-hour online meeting.

Members of the FFTC Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) were in unison in saying that with the present COVID-19 pandemic, the Center needs to adapt and adjust its activities and projects accordingly. In the recently held 25th TAC Meeting, which for the first time was done via videoconference, the TAC members who are distinguished agricultural scientists and officers from Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Taiwan and Vietnam  all agree that the Center should contextualize its present and future projects under the pandemic umbrella. This means transitioning to online activities and following the standard protocols in social distancing.

In a closed door half-hour session Chaired by Dr. Masa Iwanaga, President and Director General of Japan International Research Cetner for Agricultural Sciences (JIRCAS), the TAC members came up with the following recommendations which they later presented to the FFTC management:

  1. Examine the present Strategic Action Plan under the COVID-19 era and make the necessary adjustments in conducting the Center’s activities;
  2. Organize and hold webinars on the following themes: sustainable agriculture food systems after COVID-19; and how each country is dealing with its agricultural activities especially in the area of value chains;
  3. Conduct training programs focusing on Knowledge Management Systems.
  4. Produce videos on certain technologies which can be used by farmers under this pandemic era;
  5. Conduct a foresight study on agriculture for the next 10 years focusing on the Asian region in relation to the economic crisis, climate change, etc.;
  6. Create activities that can take advantage of the E-commerce challenge and how to secure agricultural materials;
  7. Consider the following themes in future webinars: agricultural marketing innovation; biosecurity, demand-driven R&D innovation agenda; agri-entrepreneurship and attracting the young generation of farmers to go into agriculture;
  8. Revisit the Center’s past clients to assess the Center’s impact; and
  9. Examine present MOUs and MOAs and renew those which are about to expire.
In her response to the TAC members’ recommendations, Dr. Su-San Chang said that while some recommendations are very ideal, limited resources and manpower might be a hindrance so the challenge of the management is how to implement and operationalize the TAC recommendations given such limitation.

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