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Dr. Edna Samar, the new TAC member from the Philippines, is Officer-in-Charge, Assistant Director of the Bureau of Soils and Water Management of the Philippines’ Department of Agriculture. She shares with us her insights on the recently held TAC meeting, which she attended for the very first time.

The 24th Food and Fertilizer Technology Center for the Asian and Pacific Region (FFTC) Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) Meeting held on July 24, 2018 at Great Roots Forestry Spa Resort, Sanxia District, New Taipei City  was successfully concluded with favorable recommendations from eight TAC members representing the countries of Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Taiwan,  Vietnam and the Philippines. Tasked to evaluate FFTC’s programs and projects, and provide strategic directions, the TAC strongly supports the development of a four-year FFTC Strategic Plan, subject to a two-year cycle of TAC review.

The FFTC presentations of the Director, Dr. Kuo-Ching Lin and Deputy Director, Dr. Akira Hasebe summarized the role of FFTC as facilitator of policy and strategic changes and technology innovations; and the significant achievements through the years.

Collaborative partnerships and linkages

Clearly at 48, FFTC emerged with broadened horizon from fertilizer management to sustainable agriculture aligned to the use of ICT for improved food-based interventions. It has evolved into a Regional Information Center providing Agriculture Policy Platform in the Asian and Pacific region. With expanding scope, renaming FFTC is an option best to consider after it has reached its golden year of success in 2020.

Lean in its organization yet FFTC has continued its existence and manifested its presence in the Asian Region through its competency in collaborative partnerships and linkages particularly in coordinating workshops and trainings hosted in member countries.

A warm welcome at the Taiwan Taoyuan International  Airport by no less than the Information Officer, Ronald  G. Mangubat and Administrative Staff Ms. Chia-Chuan Chang signaled a series of joyful and memorable experiences coupled with delightful Taiwanese cuisine during the welcome dinner and throughout the duration of our stay in Taiwan. The educational trip is remarkable with the hi-tech and model farms in Taoyuan and Hsinchu that featured Taiwan successes in agriculture particularly vertical farming without soil in multi-storey hydroponics, among others. Moreover, the enjoyable stories while at the Great Roots and the Taiwanese hospitability till the end of stay of Taiwan hosting is highly appreciated, not to forget the funny and serious stories with the company of our honorable TAC experts.  

Congratulations FFTC! We are all looking forward to a fruitful golden anniversary celebration, and many more years of continued excellent services to remain a blessing in the Asian and Pacific Region!

Dr. Edna Samar, Officer-in-Charge, Assistant Director, Bureau of Soils and Water Management of the Philippines’ Department of Agriculture is this year’s Philippine representative to the FFTC-TAC meeting. The other Filipino TAC member, Dr. Reynaldo Ebora from PCAARRD was not able to attend the meeting.

Dr. Edna Samar exchanges pleasantries with FFTC Director Dr. Kuo-Ching Lin. This is Dr. Samar’s first time to attend the FFTC-TAC meeting.