• Challenges at the Urban/Ag Interface
This symposium will look at problems associated with large urban populations encroaching upon production agriculture. California, with its large population centers and highly productive agriculture industry, experiences many such challenges. To serve as a model for similar situations throughout the U.S., pathologists will present their learnings from California's experience.
• Organic Foods--From Production to Market
Organic farming is one of the fastest-growing segments of U.S. agriculture, with organic food sales reaching $9.3 billion in 2002. This session will examine organic agriculture from a plant pathology perspective and address questions regarding funding sources for organic agricultural research, plant diseases and control methods, and the function of the National Organic Standards Board.
• Food Safety as Influenced by Phyllosphere Microflora
Recent advances in food safety research are enabling plant pathologists to gain insight into how dangerous human pathogens, such as certain strains of E.coli and Salmonella, can survive on fresh fruits and vegetables and what can be done to control future outbreaks. Speakers will address factors that influence establishment and persistence of human pathogens on fruit and vegetables from pre-harvest through processing and storage.
• Microbial Forensics: Plant Pathogen Models
The potential for microbes to be used with an intent to harm people, societies, or the environment has generated renewed interest in application of forensic science to assist in precise identification of a microbe and its origin. This symposium will explore the principles of microbial forensics as they may apply to specific models of plant pathogens and plant diseases.
Members of the media are invited to attend annual meeting events. Complimentary registration is available. The American Phytopathological Society (APS) is a non-profit, professional scientific organization dedicated to the study and management of plant diseases, with 5,000 members worldwide.