Cusco to host World Potato Congress and the Asociación Latinoamericana de la Papa (ALAP) Congress in 2018
Official launch will take place during National Potato Day celebrations at CIP headquarters
Over the last 15 years, ongoing strategic action has been underway in Peru for the development of the potato sector. It’s a sector on which more than 730,000 families depend. That’s 11% of the national population, some 3.65 million people. The resulting dynamism that has been generated translates to increased valorization of potato, the development of a series of potato-based products, and more political decision-making toward positioning the sector, such as the celebration of National Potato Day.
This year, the event held at CIP on 31st May will take on particular significance. In addition to the traditional ‘tuber celebrations’, the 2018 World Potato Congress-Asociación Latinoamericana de la Papa (ALAP), taking place in Cusco, Peru will be officially announced at the event.
Attending the launch will be leading authorities from the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism, as well as the National Institute of Agrarian Innovation and the National Agrarian University of La Molina, along with representatives from FAO-Peru and the International Potato Center (CIP), at whose headquarters the official announcement will be made.
Last year, as part of a special commission, these institutions held intensive negotiations with event organizers, who after due hearing and consideration, decided to grant the venue of the 2018 event to Peru.
Organizers took into account the great significance that potato holds for the country; its importance as part of an ancestral culture, as well as today’s public and private alliances around the potato production chain which have turned the sector into the most dynamic in Latin America. Added to this was the city of Cusco’s proven capacity in services, hotels and tourism to host this type of event.
The World Potato Congress is the sector’s most important international event, bringing together top representatives from industry, trade and research. It has been held every three years for the last three decades, but has never yet been held in Latin America.
To draw attention to the importance of next year’s event, the announcement of the Congress will take place in conjunction with a live exhibition of the scientific and technological developments of CIP and its partners in current key areas such as conservation, plant breeding, production systems, modelling climate change effects, and market promotion and development.
Programs relating to several of these issues are currently being implemented in Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador through the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD-ANDES)-funded project, enabling us to work with public partners and reach a wider population.
The title of the exhibition is “The Future of Potato: Biodiversity, Food Security and Business”. The title is intended to underscore an appreciation of the importance of the potato crop’s biodiversity and how this is used and valued by different actors within the production chain, satisfying the specific demands of a range of diverse markets at local, national and international level.
Peru’s hosting of the 2018 World Potato Congress- ALAP is a great opportunity, not only for the potato sector, but for Peruvian agriculture as a whole. The Congress provides an excellent showcase for demonstrating and enhancing the Peruvian experience in valorization and sustainable use of potato’s biodiversity, especially with native varieties.
At the same time, it represents an opportunity for an appreciation of experiences in other parts of the world, where science is making an important contribution to nutrition, health, food security, and industrial development through the application of different schemes for commercial differentiation and the dissemination of potato varieties and products. In turn providing a sound basis for consolidating income-generating alternatives and improving the living standards of small-scale producers in developing countries.
From the point of view of scientific research and technological innovation, the Congress will strengthen the capacities of Peru’s researchers and future agricultural professionals, giving them the opportunity to share their work and interact with top scientists from all over the world.
Date: 31 May
Time: 10 am
Place: Auditorium – International Potato Center
Av. La Universidad 1895, La Molina
The International Potato Center, known by its Spanish acronym CIP, was founded in 1971 as a root and tuber research-for-development institution delivering sustainable solutions to the pressing world problems of nutrition, hunger, poverty, and the degradation of natural resources in the face of climate change. CIP holds in global custody germplasm collections of potato, sweet potato and Andean roots and tubers, including the world’s largest collection of potato diversity. The Center has regional offices in Peru, Ecuador, Kenya, India and China, and a global presence comprising of projects in 30 developing countries across Asia, Africa and Latin America.
CGIAR is a global research partnership for a food-secure future. CGIAR science is dedicated to reducing poverty, enhancing food and nutrition security, and improving natural resources and ecosystem services. Its research is carried out by 15 CGIAR Centers in close collaboration with hundreds of partners, including national and regional research institutes, civil society organizations, academia, development organizations and the private sector. www.cgiar.org
For more information, contact:
María Elena Lanatta
Media and Communications Specialist, CIP
T: 51-5-3496017 (annex 3010) / C. 981187198