International Day of Plant Health, 12 May 2023

Baku, May 12, AZERTAC
Both our health and the health of our planet depend on plants. Plants are the source of the oxygen we breathe, much of the food we eat, the fibers that make our clothes and natural building materials. Yet, up to 40 percent of food crops are lost due to plant pests and diseases every year. This is affecting food security and agriculture, the main source of income for vulnerable rural communities. Climate change and human activities are also affecting plant health, altering ecosystems and damaging biodiversity while creating new niches for pests to thrive.
The International Day of Plant Health (I.D.P.H.) is an annual celebration held on May 12 to raise awareness about protecting plant health to improve food security, distribution, and consumption. Declared by the United Nations, I.D.P.H. aims to encourage communities to tackle plant and crop health issues as a way to help end hunger, reduce poverty, protect biodiversity, and boost economic development. The day follows as a legacy of U.N.’s International Year of Plant Health observed in 2020. Our health and that of our planet depend on the health of our plants. Plants make up 80% of the food we eat and provide 98% of the oxygen we breathe. Yet they’re constantly under threat by natural and man-made disasters, including pest infestations, the increased use of pesticides and herbicides, the rising, unsustainable pace of global trade, and climate change. These problems pose risks, especially for vulnerable rural, poverty-stricken communities, which often depend on agriculture for subsistence.
International Day of Plant Health was brought to the world’s notice first by the U.N.’s own Food and Agriculture Organization (F.A.O.), which called for further investment in innovation to boost food security and ensure that the food we eat is grown, delivered, and consumed healthily. The organization specifically calls to note the need to transform agricultural systems around the world to become more efficient, more inclusive, more resilient, and more sustainable.
In addition to its idea, the F.A.O. has mapped out several key steps to improve global plant health, such as fostering more development and implementing standard measures to protect global plant resources. It also notes the importance of safe trade practices that deemphasize the use of pesticides, to enhance the health of seeds, soils, and pollinators. On the political side, governments of the world are called on to prioritize the health of their agricultural products and the sanitary quality of their agricultural processes and to emphasize the need for more scientific input in tackling the matter. Unanimously, on March 2022, the United Nations General Assembly declared May 12 as International Plant Health Day to highlight these issues on a global scale. In subsequent years, this holiday will be marked by various events on global, regional, national, and even farm levels.

Environment 2023-05-12 14:36:00