Biosecurity built on science
Biosecurity has emerged as a major global issue. Emergency Plant Pests can impact on food safety, trade, market access, market development and, ultimately, the profitability and sustainability of plant industries.
Australia is relatively free from many of the plant pests and pathogens that seriously impact on agricultural and horticultural industries in other countries. This gives Australia a valuable competitive advantage in terms of securing market access and maintaining lower production costs through the absence of many plant pests commonly found overseas, To sustain that advantage into the future, Australian plant industries need the support of world class science and biosecurity technology.
The Cooperative Research Centre for National Plant Biosecurity (CRCNPB) commenced in November 2005. The CRCNPB will play a vital role in enhancing the scientific effort to enable Australian plant industries to pre•empt and, therefore, diminish the economic, social and environmental impact of Emergency Plant Pests. The activities of the CRCNPB will cover the full biosecurity continuum, pre•border, border and post• border. The four CRCNPB scientific research programs are focused on innovative research and development, in key areas that will deliver benefits across commodity groups: Preparedness and Prevention, Diagnostics, Surveillance and Impact Management. These programs will also introduce new technologies that will meet Australia's plant biosecurity needs within the shortest possible timeframe and will provide long•term benefits.
The CRCNPB has a strong commitment to the training of high quality Honours and PhD students and post-doctoral scientists to provide the nucleus of Australia's future plant biosecurity capacity. CRCNPB will also provide vocational training for scientists and other disciplines already working in the plant biosecurity field to enhance the core capacity of Australia. Other countries, such as the USA and New Zealand, are also addressing similar biosecurity issues and CRCNPB will be developing close linkages with key organisations in these and other countries.
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