Seed World

APSA and ISF Sign MoU to Foster Technical and Advocacy Cooperation

Representatives from APSA and ISF sign the MoU at the ISF World Seed Congress in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. (Seated, L-R: Manish Patel, Michael Keller; standing L-R: Arthur Santosh Attavar, Francine Sayoc, Marco van Leeuwen)

The Asia and Pacific Seed Alliance (APSA) and the International Seed Federation (ISF) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) during the centennial ISF World Seed held in Rotterdam.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by APSA President Dr. Manish Patel and ISF Secretary-General Michael Keller, witnessed by ISF President Arthur Santosh Attavar, Immediate Past President Marco van Leeuwen, and APSA Executive Director Francine Sayoc. This agreement marks a significant step towards enhancing collaboration between the two organizations.

The newly signed MoU will lay the groundwork for cooperation on technical and advocacy matters, focusing on crucial areas such as seed movement, plant breeding innovation, and intellectual property (IP). This partnership aligns with APSA’s and ISF’s policy priorities in the Asia-Pacific region, aiming to harmonize seed-related policies to facilitate both regional and international seed trade and innovation, according to a press release.

“The collaboration between APSA and ISF is pivotal for promoting agricultural policies and capacity building to global standards within the Asia-Pacific region,” said Patel. “This MoU is a testament to our commitment to fostering mutual technical cooperation and knowledge exchange, which will ultimately benefit the seed industry at large.”

“By building more strategic cooperation, ISF and APSA are positioned to drive significant advancements in seed policy and technical cooperation, ultimately fostering innovation and growth in the global seed industry,” said Keller.

Key Objectives and Activities of the MoU Include:

  1. Exchange of Technical Information: Both parties will share technical information in compliance with respective laws and regulations to strengthen their knowledge base and achieve strategic objectives.
  2. Organizing Cooperative Activities: APSA and ISF will jointly organize conferences, workshops, seminars, webinars, and training programs on agreed-upon subjects, especially between public and private sectors
  3. Bridging to NSAs: Increase the support and engagement with National Seed Associations, building on the complementarity of ISF and APSA
  4. Resource Development and Expert Exchange: ISF will support APSA by providing expert speakers, literature, and database resources for APSA-organized events. In return, APSA will facilitate technical and legal information exchange regarding seed movement in specific countries.

This MoU, effective for three years, signifies a non-legally binding commitment with no funding obligations, focusing instead on joint technical assistance and the exchange of expertise.

Francine Sayoc emphasized the value of increased alignment between the regional and the international association.

 “APSA is poised to play a crucial role in engaging national seed associations, bringing them up to speed on global seed policy developments and aligning our advocacies at international, regional and national level through this partnership,” she said