By Sarah Gonzalez, Director of Communications and Digital Media
Industry associations that represent the global trade of plant-based agricultural products called on governments to support the adoption of a digital transmission system for phytosanitary certificates, known as “ePhyto,” to facilitate international agricultural trade.
In a Sept. 9 press release, the Industry Advisory Group (IAG) of the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) ePhyto Solution, which includes the International Grain Trade Coalition of which NGFA is a member, said that ePhyto is a “globally uniform approach with improved crisis resilience, consistency, security, fraud prevention, sustainability and replacement of paper documentation.”
The IAG called on policy makers to “commit to a faster onboarding to the IPPC ePhyto Solution and accelerated access for all countries.” The adoption of this technology “would be crucial in safeguarding global food security beyond the Covid-19 recovery period,” the groups said.
Phytosanitary certificates facilitate unrestricted and safe trade of goods and benefit plant production sectors, as well as consumers, the press release noted, and “(e)lectronic certification as part of a broader endeavor for trade facilitation has proven itself indispensable during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic to maintain continuity of agricultural trade despite limitations on air traffic and courier services.”
Further, IAG “sees it as the responsibility of governments and policymakers to ensure the sustainability of the [ePhyto Solution] project until fully operational, as well as ensuring that all types of economies and including necessary capacity development.”
View the full press release here.