Building public awareness of advances in agricultural biotechnology is the goal of an APEC High Level Policy Dialogue workshop that begins in Peru today.
The two-day "Public Perception of Agricultural Biotechnology Workshop" has a hands-on program that will assist government and industry representatives to develop methodologies for effectively measuring public perception of agricultural biotechnology and to increase public knowledge of benefits this technology provides.
Organized by the APEC High Level Policy Dialogue on Agricultural Biotechnology (HLPDAB), the workshop is taking place in Lima on October 4-5.
HLPDAB Coordinator, Ms. Priscilla Joseph, said she hoped that delegates will gain a better understanding of how to share information on increasing public awareness of agricultural advances.
"There have been significant advances in agricultural biotechnology that will ultimately deliver great benefits to the people of the world in terms of increased agricultural production, environmental protection and food security," Ms. Joseph said.
"This workshop will help identify effective tools and techniques to promote public awareness and understanding of issues associated with biotechnology in agriculture."
Ms. Joseph said public attitudes are changing with new applications of agricultural biotechnology, particularly as related global issues become more apparent.
"The impact of emerging global issues such as climate change and altering weather patterns are particularly relevant to advances in agricultural biotechnology so will be discussed at the workshop," Ms. Joseph said.
"As the climate changes, the attributes and varieties of crops that the region grows will need to adapt, so this workshop will consider these emerging applications of agricultural biotechnology."
Speakers at the workshop include agricultural scientists, policy makers from agricultural departments and food safety regulators.
The HLPDAB was established in 2001 for policy makers in APEC's 21 member economies to exchange information and promote public policy development to support the responsible use and informed adoption of agricultural biotechnology.