Staff from the Animal Plant Health Inspection Service will be attending the annual National Potato Council Seed Seminar scheduled for Portland, ME, Dec. 5-7.
By then the NPC will have organized a 10-grower panel to evaluate the current U.S. potato industry structure for addressing phytosanitary issues.
The goal of the evaluation is to recommend a comprehensive system that will give the U.S. industry a unified approach to phytosanitary issues, both domestically and abroad.
The Industry Improvement Steering Committee will develop an organizational plan and timetable for the full IIP Task Force activities.
It is expected their work will be completed prior to the Seed Seminar. This will allow for a significant discussion of these issues at the Seminar as well as the 2003 NPC Annual Meeting set for Tucson, AZ, in early January.
APHIS staff will attend each meeting and provide input on phytosanitary issues.
It is expected the Task Force will complete its work and present its final report at the NPC’s 2004 annual meeting.