Newsletter: November 2021

Quality Seed | Quality Life

November 2021 Newsletter

Welcome to APSA’s November 2021 Newsletter! No time to read, download and listen to our podcast. Download here. 

Table of Contents 

Introduction / Address from APSA ED

Welcome everyone to the APSA newsletter and podcast for November 2021. I hope everyone is still doing well and staying safe.

November is the month that APSA has concluded our activities. Usually we would have a congress in this month but as the situation still does not allow us, we had to conduct all activities virtually this year. We are looking forward to the possibility of meeting all of you in person in the next year and especially during our congress in Thailand, which will be held in Bangkok from 14 - 18 November 2022. 

This year we are ending our year with 333 active members, which include 17 new members joining this year. Total retention rate is 88% from 2020. We hope to welcome some of our members back in 2022. The renewal of APSA membership and the new application will open from 15 December 2021. 

For members who have joined the APSA Virtual Technical Sessions and Annual General Meeting, you may have seen how much we have achieved together this year. We have organized a total of 12 webinar sessions of 3 important topics. The sessions were presented by 74 invited experts from around the world who are well recognized in the area of Seed Technology, Breeding Technology for Solanaceous and Cucurbit Crops and Biofortification and other technologies relating to Field Crops. Total outreach of the 12 webinars was more than 2000 participants from 142 companies and stakeholders. I really encourage APSA members who have never joined our webinar series to attend future events. You can still watch the recordings of the webinars on our website or add this webinar program into your employee training plan.

We really aim to serve our members to build the capacity of human resources in the seed industry. Without a great initiative and planning from a total of 60 committee members from 3 standing committees and 2 special interest groups, these great sessions could not have been completed and as successful as they were.

Beside the capacity building program, we also did a lot of policy advocacy work. We conducted outreach programs to the governments in 8 countries and one union on the Plant Variety Protection, Plant Breeding Innovation, Seed Law and Phytosanitary Regulations. We still need to continue advocating on these important issues in the region. 

During the virtual technical sessions, we did also recognize 5 scientists in the region who have contributed to high quality seeds for the farmers. I would like to congratulate Dr. M. Krishna Reddy of ICAR; Dr. Manuel L Logrono from Syngenta, Dr. Conrado Balatero from East West Seed; Dr. Sharan Angadi from Ankur Seed & ATPBR Foundation and Dr. Peter Hanson from the World Vegetable Center. All prestigious scientists truly deserved this recognition. Each one has presented their story and it was so inspirational for the young generation who are working in the seed industry, especially plant pathologists and breeders. Their story will be published in our magazine starting from Q1 next year. 

Besides our technical sessions, we also collaborate with China Seed Association to organize the China Investment opportunities forum on 19th November and other activities in November which are Seed Systems Summit, Korean Seed expo and TURKTED were also organized by national seed associations and you can find more information on our website. 

On 25th November, we organized the 2021 Asia and Pacific Seed Alliance Annual General Meeting, this AGM was attended by 149 members. One of our important agenda is the EC election. We would like to congratulate to Mr. Francois Burgaud from SAMAE who was elected under associate category, Ms Zhu Xiaobo from Wuhan Qingfa-Hesheng Seed who was re-elected in a second EC term from China under Seed Enterprise category, Dr. Kwanghong Lee from Korea Seed & Variety Service who was elected under Government Seed Agency and Dr. Yang Yasheng from China Seed Association who was elected under the Seed Association category. We also would like to thank for the great contribution from Mr. Tahir Saleemi during his presidency and as immediate past president and we would like to thank Mr. Liam Gimon, Mrs Feng Linlin and Mr. Karajan Koo for their great support during their EC tenure.

Thank you very much and any suggestions on our activities, the key issues you are facing in your seed business and possible collaborations, please do not hesitate to contact me directly at 


May Chodchoey,
APSA Executive Director



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Upcoming APSA Events

On Wednesday the 1st of December 2021, APSA will be holding Session 7 of the Asian Solanaceous & Cucurbits Round Table Webinar Series (ASCRT). The webinar will feature 2 guest speakers, Dr. David Francis from Ohio State University, USA and Dr. Rex Bernardo from University of Minnesota, USA. Participation is free for all APSA Members, but pre-registration is required.  For more details and for registration, please visit the official Event Webpage. 

We are happy to announce to all APSA Members that the 2022 Asian Seed Congress will be held in Bangkok, Thailand. Next year’s congress will be held as a hybrid event, both in-person and virtually. As of now, congress dates are currently set for 14 – 18 November 2022. As we are currently within the planning process, more details will follow shortly, so please stay tuned.

I would also like to inform all our members of a communication that was sent out 1 November 2021. This communication was a survey was sent out to all Active APSA Voting Representatives regarding the potential host countries for the 2023 Asian Seed Congress. The survey is asking to select your top 3 choices from a total of 5 potential host countries; Australia, Bangladesh, India, New Zealand and Pakistan. The communication also includes a link where our members will be able to access and view each country’s ASC 2023 Proposal Presentation. Please be advised that the survey will close on 10 November 2021, where the results will be presented during the 2021 Annual General Meeting. If you have not yet answered the survey, please do so immediately. Your input is highly recommended and greatly appreciated.


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Other Seed Industry Related Events

The Seed Biotechnology Center at the University of California, Davis has organized a professional development course to teach the principles of plant breeding to seed industry personnel. This two-year course addresses the reduced numbers of plant breeders being trained in academic programs. Participants meet at UC Davis for six sessions over two years. Readings and exercises continue between sessions via the internet to allow participants to maintain their current positions while being involved in the course.

The course is targeted toward personnel currently involved in plant breeding programs who lack the academic background in genetics theory and practice to advance as independent breeders, and to current breeders who desire a refresher course or would like to broaden their expertise. The goal of this course is to develop the skills and abilities of current industry personnel to enable them to become independent breeders or more valuable contributors to larger breeding programs.

Due to COVID-19 delays, instruction for Class VIII of the Plant Breeding Academy will begin in February 2022 and the class will graduate in September 2023.

If you are interested in participating and applying for the UC Davis Plant Breeding Academy Course, please click on the following link for more details.

China Seed Related Events

The details, benefits and timeline for the APSA-WorldVeg Consortium can be found on the APSA website, the webpage for which Is linked from the newsletter.

A bitter gourd field day will be held on 18th December 2021 at ICAR-Indian Institute of Horticultural Research, Bangalore to demonstrate the 2021 APSA-WorldVeg Vegetable Breeding Consortium exclusive lines. Only the 2021 consortium companies are eligible to attend this field day. Registration will begin on November 01, 2021 and will end on November 30, 2021. Please be noted that On-site registration is now allowed. If you want to join it, please make sure to register in advance.

As this Bitter Gourd field demo is for 2021 APSA-WorldVeg Consoritium members only,  if you want to join the field demo, please don’t hesitate to join 2021 APSA-WorldVeg Consortium by the following the link in the newsletter. To register you will need to log in as an APSA member 

 here register online (member-only) or contact Xiaofeng Li. (


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Public-Private Partnerships

Welcome to Technical Affairs update. The same as before, let’s start with the WorldVeg Consortium update.

The details, benefits and timeline for the APSA-WorldVeg Consortium can be found here.

A bitter gourd field day will be held on 18th December 2021 at ICAR-Indian Institute of Horticultural Research, Bangalore to demonstrate the 2021 APSA-WorldVeg Vegetable Breeding Consortium exclusive lines. Only the 2021 consortium companies are eligible to attend this field day. Registration began on November 01, 2021 and will end on November 30, 2021. Please be noted that On-site registration is not allowed. If you want to join it, pls make sure to register asap to catch the last train from the link here.

As this Bitter Gourd field demo is for 2021 APSA-WorldVeg Consortium members only,  if you want to join the field demo, pls  don’t hesitate to join 2021 APSA-WorldVeg Consortium by the link here register online (member-only) or contact Xiaofeng Li. (

The Field Demo for 2021 consortium exclusive tomato and pepper lines will be held on May 9th, and the 2022 APSA-WorldVeg Consortium annual workshop will be held on May 10th at ICAR-Indian Institute of Horticultural Research, Benglaluru, India. The registration will be open next month, please stay tuned for the update.

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Technical Affairs Updates

This is a special month for all SC and SIG committees to organize the signature technical events of Virtual Technical Session. This year we have to go with the online platform again since COVID-19 does not allow us to meet physically. 

We are pleased to inform you that the recorded webinar will be ready to open to the public soon in APSA Past Event Section or visit this link:

Standing Committees and Special Interest Groups 

Aside from this, the Special Interest Group on Vegetables and Ornamentals or SIG Veg & Orn met on 21st October. The Virtual Technical Session was another successful event under the committee’s supervision. The next meeting of the SIG V&O is scheduled to be held on January 27, 2022, the group will discuss the possibility of a physical tour and will review the new initiatives of the WIC, so let us share the updates from the WIC working group.

The Working Group of Integrated Vegetable and Seed Companies: The WIC group met on November 26. Members reviewed the summary reports of the APSA PVP Toolbox Programs and the Train the Trainers 2021 Program. Members appreciated the participation and the outcome of both training sessions. During the WIC meeting, 3 new initiatives were discussed including The Burning Issues in APAC seed industry region, Vegetable Landscaping report in APAC Countries and University Connect Program. More updates on these initiatives will be shared in the WIC November 2021 meeting summary report.

The Disease Resistance Terminology Working Group will have its next meeting on January 21. The group validated and submitted a list of 11 pathogen codes to ISF which will be published on ISF website. For the bitter gourd project, the response of the National Biodiversity Authority is awaited while the group has already proposed a list of vegetables to WIC members to seek their interest for the next focus crop. Therefore, by January 2022, the DRT will initiate working on the pathogens of at least 3 crops which have not been covered by ISF.

The R&D Advisory Group will have the next meeting on December 17. The upcoming webinar of the ASCRT 7 is scheduled for December 1st and will be the last webinar for 2021. The R&D group has been planning for the physical Asian Solanaceous Round Table and Asian Cucurbits Round Table for which the agenda and registration details will be announced by APSA in December 2021. So, stay tuned for the exciting upcoming events and now let us hear from Steven.



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Sponsorship & Advertising Opportunities

As part of APSA’s digitalization and digitization strategy, in 2022 we’re offering active members even more ways to directly reach Asia-Pacific seed industry decision makers directly — in their inbox, on their desktop PCs, laptops, smartphone, tablets, and phablets alike, through our exciting new affiliate, sponsorship, marketing, communication, advertising and publicity opportunities. We will announce our APSA 2022 Sponsorship & Advertising Packages soon. In the meantime, inquiries and interest can be emailed to Bobbie ( or Mike (



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Seed Industry News

Farmer choice emphasized at FAO Seed Systems Summit: On 4-5 November, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) organized The Global Conference on Green Development of Seed Industries. . . . 

OECD paper on Asia-Pacific seed industry impacts: OECD Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Papers on October 14 published a paper titled “The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on global and Asian seed supply chains”.  . . .

Details on these on our international seed industry news page


HPV and WSMV for corn seed no longer regulated: Phytosanitary regulations for High plains virus (HPV) and Wheat streak mosaic virus (WSMV) will not longer be imposed for the sowing seeds of Zea mays  though those for Maize dwarf mosaic potyvirus (MDMV) persist . . . . 

More details on these and other stories in the Australia seed industry news page


Investment opportunities in China seed industry: Prospect in the world’s largest market for seeds, planting material and related inputs and technologies, continue to shine bright thanks to a foreign investment friendly policy to ‘open the door even wider’. . . . 

New phyto measures for tomato, pepper seed imports: New phytosanitary measures have been announced by the General Administration of Customs, People’s Republic of China as part of efforts for the prevention of the introduction of Tomato Brown Rugose Fruit Virus with seeds of the Solanum Lycopersicum and Capsicum spp. . . . .

See all China seed industry news here


Palm seeds planted to protect biodiversity: Tens of thousands of palmyra seeds have been planted on islands off the coast of Tamil Nadu as part of efforts to mitigate sea erosion and thus protect local biodiversity. . . .

Expectations soar for mustard output: Production of mustard, a key oilseed crop cultivated during the Rabi season, is expected to yield an “all-time high” this season as prices for the crop currently are 52 per cent higher than the minimum support price of ₹5,050 per quintal. . . . 

Carrot seed supply investigation ongoing: Representatives of several multinational companies have been transparent and cooperative with authorities as part of ongoing investigations into a complaint alleging unfair market and supply practices. . . . 

These stories in more on Indian seed industry news page


Hands on charity for single-mother rice distribution: An initiative to distribute newly-harvested rice to single-mother households in three prefectures in central Japan's Tokai region is making life easier for single mothers and their children. . . . 

Japan supports, engages Southeast Asia agriculture sectors: Several headlines in November highlight cooperation projects and programs between Japan and the Southeast Asian countries of Viet Nam, Laos and the Philippines. . . . 

Read these stories and more in Japan seed industry news


Korea seed industry comes to life online: Held from October 6 to November 2, the 2021 Korea Seed Expo attracted wide international interest and generated seed business leads and deals to the tune of tens of millions of dollars. . . . 

Read these stories and more in our Korea seed industry news

The Phillippines

Golden Rice passes taste test: Several government and PR ‘stakeholders’ participating in a “taste test” of golden rice -- paddy engineered to contain Beta carotene -- all agreed that it tastes just like “ordinary white rice”, . . . 

More Philippines seed industry news page.


Turkey Online Seed Fair 2021: The Turkish Seed Industries Association (TURKTED) organized its 2021 Online Seed Fair from 11 - 13 November 2021. This virtual seed fair was held in lieu of the annual physical fair, which provides great opportunities for seed and seed technology companies in Turkey and around the world to display their products. . .  

More on Turkey seed industry news page


Thai academia and industry conform for sustainable agriculture: On November 29, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands organized the first Cleveringa Lecture in Thailand on “Global Agro-Biodiversity; A Communication on Sustainable Agro-Food Value Chain”, inviting various government and industry active stakeholder in sustainable agriculture based or operating in Thailand. . . . 

Chia Tai Contributes to Society By Joining Forces in "We Do Good By Heart" Volunteer Project: Chia Tai Company Limited, Thailand's leading innovative agricultural company, powers up with employees to volunteer to do good deeds for the communities nationwide through "We Do Good By Heart" Volunteer Project . . . 

THASTA webinar enhances Thai knowledge and awareness of gene-editing: On 20-21 October, the Thai Seed Trade Association (ThaSTA), in partnership with APSA, the International Seed Federation, Crop Life International and CBIJ, co organized a seminar on gene-editing technology for ThaSTA members. . . .

More Thai seed industry news


Biomass corn promises more stable income for farmers: Farmers in the Krong Pa district of Gia Lai province are switching over to biomass varieties of maize, which is reportedly yielding them a more stable income than other types of maize. . . . 

Tet 2022 flower planting commences in Xuan Tho: Flower farmers in the Xuan Tho Commune have planted some 135 hectares of flowers in anticipation for the Tet 2022 celebrations early next year. . . . 

Clean, beautiful and secure Communes aimed for in rural development: A conference of various experts collectively are asking for rural development in the coming years to emphasize cleanliness, beautification and security. . . 


The above is only a sample of what’s new. For more of all the latest news updates from around the region, visit our respective news portals by country:


Seed Industry News by country in alphabetical order








Korea, South





New Zealand








Central Asia

Middle East




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Asian Seed magazine Vol. 27 No.4 (Quarter 4, 2021)

Password: QualitySeedQ4

Our fourth and final issue of Asian Seed and Planting Material Volume 27 brings into perspective the immediate past, present and future of the seed industry with respect to a number of important news, initiatives, developments and trends. Starting with updates from APSA president and Executive Director  which include updates from the recent Annual General Meeting, technical sessions and other important matters, the magazine issue has exclusive updates from the China seed industry. We have a story announcing the winners for APSA’s new excellence recognition program in which we name the five most influential seed scientists of the Asia-Pacific in 2021. There is also an interview with the lead of the 2021 Access to Seeds Index, which scores, ranks and compares leading international seed companies on their efforts to provide quality seeds throughout Africa, South and Southeast Asia. We also have an update in the form of a Q&A with the ISF about gene-editing trends, policies and communications. There’s a spread containing the Executive Summary of the OECD’s recent report looking at the impacts of Covid, with a focus on the Asia-Pacific region, and which was based on several surveys, including those conducted by APSA this and last year on the topic. Our main cover feature takes a deep dive into the current trend for rising energy and  shipping costs, which will continue to have monumental impacts on the bottom line for the international seed trade. We also have updates on advocacy and policy initiatives taken on by APSA and associates in several countries in the region. This is in addition to our regular updates from APSA’s Technical Affairs.  

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